Deep Blue: Oregon’s Crater Lake

Updated: Dec 28, 2020

Volcanoes have been a distinct theme during my recent travels. When I saw Crater Lake National Park on my current itinerary I was of course happy, but perhaps not enthused after just flying away from Central America’s huge number of magnificent volcanos.

I whole-heartedly apologize to Crater Lake and the State of Oregon for doubting your spender!

Crater Lake is spectacular – even magical. And on this particular day the stars aligned and offered clear roads, plies of snow and finally and break in the clouds which liberated the lake’s (ethereal / vibrant / hypnotizing / beautiful ….) blue.

While there is so much to enjoy about the National Park, I would like to share Park Ranger Dave Grimes top-10 reasons why Crater Lake is special:

  1. From Tumult to Tranquility (the perfect lake emerged from a massive explosion less than 8000 years ago)

  2. The Crater Lake Moss-ter! (Moss that begins growing 80 feet down and can climb 30 feet or more)

  3. The Crater lake Monster! (tiny flies that lay eggs on the surface, but live for three years as worms on the bottom of the lake before re-emerging to mate an die – and they don’t bite)

  4. ‘Holey-Smokes’ – The Pinnacles (petrified smoke columns – but I couldn’t see them in this visit because of snow)

  5. Rocks that Fly and Float (pumice rock that was sprayed out during the eruption and will float on the lake surface when washed back by snowfall and storms)

  6. Best Vanishing Act Ever  (Mount Mazama simply blew its tops and collapsed resulting in the crater (Native American communities spoke of the event)

  7. A Catastrophic Explosion (ash from the eruption made its way to Europe!)

  8. World’s Clearest Water (high altitude UV rays helps to purify the water and stop the growth of algae and bacteria)

  9. Annual Snowfall = 44 feet (14 meters – melted snow gradually filled the lake since the eruption, and it has a natural over-flow valve!)

  10. Deepest Lake in the USA (1943 feet – the 9th deepest Lake in the world)

I stayed in little Rogue River near popular Grant’s Pass in Oregon’s South West. The drive up to Crater Lake is excellent, gaining around 6000 feet (2000 meters) in two hours. Wonderful birdlife, great forests and what would appear to be excellent fly-fishing on the Rogue River.

I have not been back to southern Oregon for several years, but Crater lake has already made the trip worth the effort!

Please enjoy the photos and know they are not nearly as good as the real thing…..



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