Crater Lake National Park - 2008 . . .
during our travels in the Pacific Northwest

Updated: 01/05/09


off toward Crater Lake       Crater Lake National Park . . .     Leaving Crater Lake . . .    Rogue Gorge . . .



We were off toward Crater Lake, our next destination.



We stopped for lunch at a rest area with a covered bridge.

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It was a colorful ride - even the houses were colorful.


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The piles of logs were being watered with a fine mist before being made into plywood. Interestingly, we watched a show recently on the  Discovery Channel that said the water softens the wood. The logs are then spun so a blade can slice off thin sheets of wood. The core of the log that is left is used for 2x4s.


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d f0929 or_124 logs chips_1.jpg (30069 bytes) Sawdust?



Another decorative Oregon bridge . . . a grass plant . . . grape vines


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a a ml IMG_0520 copter w bucket_1.jpg (18827 bytes)Mary Lou spotted this helicopter hovering over a river with a cable hanging down. The cable was attached to a bucket filling with water. The helicopter took the bucket of water out of the river and headed for a forest fire area.








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We think this pipeline was carrying water out of the mountains to a electric generating plant.


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The pine lined road into Crater Lake was beautiful.


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We entered Crater Lake National Park at the west entrance from Highway 62.



d f0929 or_193 crater camp closed_1.jpg (48444 bytes)We will make a long story as short as possible. We are parked behind the orange cone and small "B" loop closed sign because the other end of the "B" loop was not barricaded. Oops.

When we arrived at Crater Lake National Park at about 5:30pm, the fellow at the entrance booth said, "welcome - I hope you aren't planning to camp here tonight. Our campground closed at noon today." After explaining that the Web site said they were open for another week, that it was too late to drive back down the road 19 miles and not 'just going away', he said go in and see what someone else tells you. We didn't see anyone else because everything closed at 5:00pm. Driving into the campground a sign said Loop "C' and "D" to the right were closed and these cones and sign were in front of us. We noticed one RV in the campground to our left - as it turned out they were in Loop "A". We turned down the first road which turned out to be 'closed' Loop "B". We pulled into a site , talked for a couple minutes and decided to spend the night in site B15. We didn't feel too bad because two other RVs set up in Loop "B" later.

The store was open in the morning so we went in to pay. The concessionaire said they had already shutdown her computer - she could not take our money. The system had accepted reservations for periods after the 'closing date', so people were still in the campground. As we were planning to stay two nights, Fred asked if that meant we could stay two nights free. She said, "I don't care, that is up to the rangers now". We never saw a ranger in the campground. Because we spent most of the day driving around Crater Lake, we stayed the second night - free. More RVers joined us the second night.



b f1001 or_105 camp food storage_1.JPG (48542 bytes)a f0930or cl_561_1.JPG (65407 bytes)Each campsite had a bear-proof "Hyd-A-Meal" locker to store food in.     






The park lodge was also closed.

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It was getting a new roof before to winter.




Crater Lake National Park . . .


Crater Lake National Park, established in 1902, protects the deepest lake (1,943 feet) in the United States preserving it for generations to come. Fed by rain and snow the lake is considered to be the cleanest large body of water in the world. The water is exceptional for its clarity and intense blue color. 

The lake rests inside a caldera formed approximately 7,700 years ago when the 12,000 foot tall Mount Mazama volcano collapsed following a major eruption. Later eruptions formed Wizard Island and a cinder cone near the southwest shore.





The Crater Lake portion of this page will be like a photo album. Most of the time words could not better explain the beauty of the view. We will let the photographs present the amazing Crater Lake. Many of the photographs will include the island and the phantom ship because those are the only two features on Crater Lake .




a f0930or cl_102 map_1.jpg (147794 bytes)Rim Drive is a 33-mile road that encircles Crater Lake. It is a one hour drive if you do not stop -  with stops, they estimate two to three hours. More than 30 pullouts offer dramatic views of the park’s volcanic scenery. It took us five hours including lunch.

We decided it was best to travel the Rim Drive counterclockwise from the Steel Visitor Center. The position of the sun seemed best on this route in late September.

 < Click on the map to see a larger image of the roads around Crater Lake.




We drove to the visitors center for information first.

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The visitor center displayed a nice relief map of the lake.


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a f0930or cl_119 crater edge_1.JPG (38998 bytes)Because we drove the route counterclockwise, the outside wall of the crater was on our left. We drove on the East Rim Drive for a few miles before seeing Crater Lake. 







Vidae Falls were just a quick stop along the way.

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a f0930or cl_126 crater edge_1.JPG (71576 bytes)In addition to the crater wall to our left, we could see a couple forest fires to our right. So they did not continue to receive numerous reports of the same fires, a sign was posted alongside the road where the fires could be seen.

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a f0930or cl_151_1.JPG (61021 bytes)Finally, a glimpse of Crater Lake. Some of the pull-offs were named, some were not. We did not miss any opportunity to view Crater Lake.





Soon, we were driving on the rim which provided spectacular views.


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Cloudcap Overlook - highest elevation at 7,865 feet . . .

















a a f0930or cl_260 scott.JPG (24680 bytes)a f0930or cl_259 mt scott_1.JPG (34941 bytes)Mount Scott is now the highest mountain in the park at 8,926 feet.








a f0930or cl_262 restrooms_1.JPG (62032 bytes)a f0930or cl_265 trikes_1.JPG (61513 bytes)a f0930or cl_264 trikes_1.JPG (61929 bytes)While we were stopped for a break, these bicyclists peddled in. Fred commented on the safety flags they had on their bikes. (We had seen a guy in a small town with no flags on a bicycle likes these - you could hardly see him.) Their bikes had 28 speeds. We don't know their plans but we took five hours to drive the 33 miles.




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When we get home, it will be difficult to tell anyone
where our favorite lunch spot was during our travels.





The direction and time we traveled put the sun in our face very little.


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a f0930or cl_347_1.JPG (48504 bytes)a f0930or cl_342_1.JPG (61703 bytes)a f0930or cl_358_1.JPG (53297 bytes)a f0930or cl_352_1.JPG (59801 bytes)The boat ride service was closed for the season. It is a 2-hour cruise around Crater Lake. We think the white building is the boathouse.



We found the docks in their winter storage location on the west side of the island.


The only way to the boat dock is a walking path that drops 700 feet in 1.1 miles.
This path is the only access to the shore of the lake. 




This rock near the boat parking lot will make a big splash someday.

a f0930or cl_360_1.JPG (52010 bytes)   a f0930or cl_381_1.JPG (69923 bytes) The edge was too shear to see the boat house.




Looking at a surveyors marker, we though how difficult the surveying task was without GPS.

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We are almost to Rim Village at the south entrance road.


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Pumas Desert . . .

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Some snow remained here and on the lake shore.                     Notice one of thousands of guide 'branches' for the snowplow drivers.




a f0930or cl_450_1.JPG (34051 bytes)If you wished, you could walk the upper trail (old road) to Rim Village.







These photographs give a closer look at the island we have seen from various viewing locations all day.


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The crater of the island had an interesting look.
























a f0930or cl_533_1.JPG (90201 bytes)a f0930or cl_532_1.JPG (40592 bytes)a f0930or cl_540_1.JPG (49967 bytes)A nice rim walk led to the left from the lodge.






An overlook hung on the side of the caldera near the Rim Village Lodge.

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While we were there, a young lady dressed in soot covered work clothes walked up - camera in hand. She told us she graduated from college and could not find a job in her field. So she signed up as a forest fire fighter. Her group from Idaho just finished two weeks in the area.


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a f0930or cl_552_1.JPG (71378 bytes)The park service has thousands of pipes/tubes 'planted' at ground level along the roadway throughout the park. Before the snow flies, a tall branch with two rings of reflective silver tape near the top is placed in each one of them.









Leaving Crater Lake . . .


We had beautiful weather for our day at Crater Lake. The day we left was not very pleasant.


Bridge over the Rogue River . . .  





Rogue Gorge . . .


b f1001 or_110 rogue gorge sign_1.JPG (52866 bytes) Rogue Gorge is about 20 miles southwest of Crater Lake. We noticed it on the way to Crater Lake a couple days ago. It is worth a twenty minute stop.

b f1001 or_112 donation sign_1.jpg (62916 bytes)Like at many other Federal and State attractions, an opportunity to donate was made known. 







Fall colors were appearing.




This was interesting.

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The walkway was asphalt and reasonably level.










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Holes in the lava rock . . .


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Walking a different path out, we saw this old road. 


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Cute sign . . .

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On the road again . . .

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Some unusual sights - a UPS truck at a post office, an old police car decoy and a neat RV.

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    We enjoyed our time in Oregon.









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