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PNW Road Trip: Crater Lake National Park

I lived in Oregon for 22 years, but never went to Crater Lake. MS never lived in Oregon for a second, but had been.  We decided that after IPNC we would drive south and see this amazing natural wonder.  Crater Lake was created when Mount Mazama erupted about 5,700 years ago creating this amazing lake. The water in the lake is just from rainfall and snow melt.  There are no rivers that flow into the lake which is one of the reasons the surface of the lake is so calm.

We wanted to do a bit of hiking but only had one day to do this. We decided to do the Mount Scott trail, which is about 2.5 miles long (or so the National Park Service claims — I think it was much more). The hike ended at just under 9,000 feet.  We aren’t in horrible shape, but we aren’t frequently active at altitude — or so that is our excuse), but the hike was pretty strenuous.

We also hiked a brand new trail to a great waterfall. Most people didn’t even realize this was an option as there wasn’t an official trail.  People would blaze their own trail and return with some amazing pictures — so the National Park Service created this very easy 1 mile trail.

Have you been to Crater Lake? What is your favorite part of the park? Do you hike, stroll, sit and watch the water?  When you visit a National Park do you do it once and check it off your list or do you return frequently?

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