CRATER LAKE NATIONAL PARK
Crater Lake National Park
Crater Lake is a place of mysterious beauty. The lake itself is most known for being the deepest lake in America and for having pure, crystal clear, bright blue water. Its depth stretches 2,000 feet into a sinking abyss that was, at one time, Mount Mazama. Many Native American legends explain the sudden and abrupt collapse of Mount Mazama, a one-time active volcano. After Mount Mazama dramatically plummeted into the Earth, the massive cavity was steadily filled with water from years of snowfall and rain. Not a single stream or river flows into the pristine water source; therefore, it is lacking many of the minerals that are often found in traditional rivers and lakes. The lack of various minerals is the contributing factor to Crater Lake’s brilliant blue water. This deep blue gem is known as one of the seven wonders of Oregon.
If you are like me and enjoy finding new places to explore, Crater Lake National Park should be added to your “must-see” list! To further pique your interest, please check out the random facts about Crater Lake listed below.
1. Crater Lake receives, on average, 43 feet of snow a year!
2. Only at Crater Lake will you find the unique creature, the Mazama newt.
This unique lizard, also known as the Crater Lake Newt, calls Crater Lake national park home and refuses to venture out anywhere else. They are beautiful, rare creatures to stumble across while venturing around the lake’s edge. If you are lucky enough to have a camera on hand, try to capture a photo! These colorful lizards are not found anywhere else in the world.
3. Islands climb out of the lake.
4. Rim Road, which outlines Crater Lake, has over 30 scenic stops.
Pumice Castle Overlook
Cleetwood Cove Trail
Castle Crest Wildflower Garden Walk
Overall, Rim Road stretches for 33 miles on the edge of Crater Lake. If you were to drive it fully without making a single stop, it would take approximately 30 minutes to complete it. However, with so many stops along the way, you can easily turn this into a day trip. Don’t worry, there are also several resting places for taking a bathroom break and grabbing some grub. Mazama Village and Rim Village are both places where you can stop, grab something to eat, purchase a souvenir or two, or maybe three, refill your water bottles, and take a bathroom break.
5. Crater Lake is a fun place to test out your bicycle!
6. Crater Lake has a fire season during the summer.
7. Discover the spectacular tree life in Crater Lake National Park.
Ponderosa Pine Forest
Mountain Hemlocks Zone
Whitebark Pines Zone
Lodgepole Pine Forest
8. Crater Lake has the darkest nights in the United States.
9. The collapse of Mount Mazama created Crater Lake.
As previously mentioned, the collapse of Mount Mazama created the lake in which we know and love today. We know that Mount Mazama was a giant volcano that stretched 12,000 feet toward the sky. The volcanic mountain was a special beacon for the Makalak people thousands of years ago. As oral tradition recorded it, the Makalak people described the volcanic collapse as a massive spiritual battle between the mountain and the sky. The native people considered the battle won by the sky spirits when the volcanic mountain collapsed into the Earth. It is believed that the mountain was considered sacred to the native people, thus causing them to mourn the loss of Mount Mazama tremendously. It is history such as this that can be explored while visiting Crater Lake National Park. Why hasn’t Hollywood made a movie about this yet?
10. The wildlife viewing is incredible.
Lastly, whenever you visit somewhere that involves mesmerizing nature views like Crater Lake, you can’t forget about the wildlife. When I drove around Crater Lake National Park on Rim Road, I saw many deer who roamed the high altitudes with ease and grace. The area is populated with many birds, amphibians, fish, bobcats, and elk. If you are a photographer, visiting Crater Lake will give you plenty of opportunities to capture wildlife photos. However, if you decide to hike the trails, be aware that bobcats do roam the area. While they are beautiful to see, they should never be approached or fed. They can be a danger to humans if encountered too closely. Otherwise, enjoy the wildlife sights in addition to the spectacular scenic views.
For More Information
For more information on Crater Lake National park and updates, be sure to visit the National Parks Foundation at: https://www.nationalparks.org/connect/explore-parks/crater-lake-national-park Or at Friends of Crater Lake: https://www.friendsofcraterlake.org/