A Day at Crater Lake National Park

20 08 2016

Crater Lake LodgeAfter a quick email check we’ve opted to start our day at Crater Lake with a restaurant breakfast.  Unfortunately a bit of a slow start and some unexpected road construction causes us to arrive at Annie Creek Restaurant in Mazama Village just as they are switching over to lunch.  But their tasty sandwiches make a fine substitute for breakfast.  After a quick drive around the Mazama Village campground, we head up to the Visitors Center, then to Rim Village.  The jewel of the Crater Lake crown must be the beautiful Lodge.  Opened in 1915 and recently completely renovated, the Lodge features what is perhaps the best view of the caldera and lake.

Formed 7700 years ago, Crater Lake is the result of a massive volcano estimated to be over 12,000 feet tall literally collapsing onto itself.  After spewing enough ash that would cover the state of Oregon 8 inches deep, the magma chamber could no longer support the weight of the mountain and it collapsed into what is today Crater Lake.  The deepest lake in the US at nearly 2000 feet, and thought to contain the most pure water of any lake in the world, the lake level is maintained by only snow and rain.  And, with an average snowfall of 44 feet, there is plenty of melting water to keep the lake refilled from seepage and evaporation.

Entering along the western rim, we continue along the eastern rim to complete the circumnavigation of the lake in about 3 hours.  Plenty of rim-side parking spots and one side-excursion to The Pinnacles provided plenty of photo opportunities and information on the lake, it’s two small islands and even a castle on the edge of the caldera.  Overall a great day in a beautiful National Park!

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