Crater Lake

The country’s deepest lake.

Although misnamed — it’s in a caldera, not a crater — Crater Lake in Oregon is among the most beautiful sights in the country. It also holds the honor of being the deepest, at over 1900 feet deep.

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I visited Crater Lake for the second time in August 2005 during my 16-day road trip. Although I didn’t really have a reason to make the drive up to the lake, it wasn’t far off my path and it was certainly worth the drive. I had the ingredients of a picnic lunch with me and enjoyed it in the shade not far from the path along the caldera’s rim. Then I took a short hike around the main visitor area, which was being renovated.

I’ve been to the lake twice and both times it looked exactly the same. Crystal-clear blue water with a smooth, glassy surface, surrounded by mountains studded with tall pine trees. The water reflects the color of the sky, which always seems to be clear deep blue.

There are two islands in the lake — this one is called Wizard Island and it rises over 700 feet above the water’s surface. It was impossible, with my camera, to get a photo of the entire lake because it’s quite large — five to six miles wide. This shot came out best of the ten of so photos I took.

You can learn more about Crater Lake at the National Park Service’s Crater Lake Web site. I do recommend seeing it in person, though. It’s quite a treat and not nearly as crowded in the summer as some of the other National Parks.

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