Almost entirely fed of snowfall, Crater Lake is one of the clearest lakes in the world. Native American legend claims that the mountain bluebird was grey before it dipped into its vibrant blue waters. Five miles in diameter and the deepest depth at 1,943 feet also makes Crater Lake the deepest lake in the United States and the 9th deepest in the whole world. The lake is inside a volcanic basin that was created when Mount Mazama collapsed after eruption, nearly 8,000 years ago.
Driving Crater Lake
Driving from viewpoint to viewpoint is also incredibly beautiful. I love the feel of driving through national parks, with very few cars around you between the viewpoint stops. It’s peaceful and freeing, feeling like you’re driving an open road.
The Mystery Of Crater Lake
Crater Lake is so insanely beautiful that even the most amazing pictures you see online don’t do it justice. I knew it was a sight we had to see with our own eyes and it exceeded even my wildest expectations of the beauty we would find. But, with the beauty, of course, Oregon’s Crater Lake comes with mystery.
Wizard Island: Rising 767 feet above the surface of Crater Lake, this little island has a wizard hat shape and has a crater almost 300 feet across on its summit. People claim to see ghostly campfires on the island at night.
Phantom Ship Island: This rock formation resembling a sailing ship rises 160 feet above the lake’s surface. Depending on the weather conditions, it will seem to appear and disappear from visibility.
The Old Man of the Lake: An ancient hemlock tree stump has mystified scientists for years as it floats in a perfectly upright position in Crater Lake. It is not anchored and hasn’t been for over 100 years. According to the National Parks Conservation Association, “The Old Man’s sun-bleached and splintered head and torso floated nearly four feet above the water. His lower body descended 30 feet into the depths, and his waist was two feet in diameter at the surface.” It is said that the old man also controls the weather. When a submarine crew tied up the tree, they had severe storms until they let it go free again.
Crater Lake is a great testament to the power of nature and what it can do. The Park is open year-round, 24 hours a day. However, expect some closures throughout the year during winter. When we were there, they had the West Rim closed due to forest fires. We felt like we were still able to cover a lot of the 33-mile Rim Drive and still see what a wonder the world really is.