13.09.16. Crater Lake National Park, Oregon
I suppose the thing about being at 4,500 feet above sea level means that you’re going to be pretty chilly in the morning.
Even though we didn’t set off until 9 ish, the temperature was still down at 4 degrees Celsius despite the glorious sunshine. It was only about a 20-mile ride to the park, but I didn’t realise until about 2 miles to go that my vents were open on my trousers! No wonder my legs were so cold.
Once in to the park, there was the deep joy of sitting in a road works queue, with an expected delay of 30 minutes. Luckily, it wasn’t 30 minutes because the wind was whipping across our faces and taking our breath away.
Of course, returning to a National Park means the inevitable traffic, and people, but once we had adjusted to that, we thoroughly enjoyed the day.
Crater Lake is a relatively small park, with a driving route of 33 miles around it. It is, however, extremely beautiful and interesting. It was made a National park in 1902, but was formed 7,700 years ago by an exploding volcano. The volcano exploded where a mountain peak called Mazama once stood, leaving behind a deep basin. The basin was filled by centuries of rain and snow forming the deepest of blue lakes.
The lake is 6 miles across at its widest point, and holds 4.9 trillion gallons of water.
The Mazama volcano is not extinct, just sleeping and forms a part of the Cascade range of volcanoes that reaches from California to British Columbia in Canada.
The park only opens from late June to mid October, as there is an average snowfall of 44 feet, which makes the roads and surrounds impassable.
We are staying again tonight at Lake Lemolo, which is a very tranquil (although still a little odd) place tp rest.