Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Crater Lake National Park

usbackroads destination-Crater Lake National Park

travel dates:  June 17th, 2015

Since we were staying in the neighborhood at Crescent Lake, Oregon we decided to load up the bicycles and take the short trip to Crater Lake National Park and ride around the lake.

We did want to do the boat trip to Wizard Island, but we were to early in the season for the trip.  The boat trips started a week after we left the area.

Even though I worked for the National Park Service they are not my favorite areas to visit.  Too many rules and regulations.  As I noted in a previous posting about the National Park Service.  Here is my quote from that posting:

"The National Parks are famous for their rules and regulations.  In many ways the Park Service is the agency of NO.   The best mindset for visiting the National Parks is to think of them not as wildlands, but as a museum.   A very pretty and large natural history museum in most cases.  Walk carefully between the lines, speak softly, and do not use flash and you will be all right."

Crater Lake National Park could use a few lines.  Particularly, on the edge of their roads!!

We took one look at the narrow roadways and decided that it might be best to leave the bicycles on the truck and drive around the lake.  Notice the lack of ANY shoulder on the roadway.  That did not stop our bicycling friends from Switzerland.  They took a "zero" miles day camping inside the park. Well, a zero miles day without panniers as they did the whole loop with their bicycles.

When visiting Crater Lake take the loop in a clockwise direction.  That will put all the viewpoints and turnouts on YOUR SIDE of the road.  That way you will not have to cross traffic to get to the viewpoints. 

Here is a link to the map:  Crater Lake Visitor Map.

For us the trip started at the Wizard Lake overlook.  See picture at top of blog.  We were not the only ones enjoying the view.

There was also a version of the world famous SST toilet.  However, no plaque or other notice of the famous Sweet Smelling Toilet.  In fact, the National Park Service did its best to hide it behind a stone face!

The other impressive item on this trip was the pollen fall on Crater Lake.  So if you have allergies June might not be the time of year to visit Crater Lake.

National Parks have this urge to name all natural features.  So this becomes Shiprock Island.  It is interesting in its own right.

At the visitor area I discovered that the Park Service loves the stone face design for all its buildings.  For some reason, I  just have this feeling that the Park Service architect liked having stone forts as a kid and decided to live out his childhood by building these thing inside the National Parks.

At Crater Lake the difference between sky and lake is minimal at best.  This is a picture of the LAKE, not the sky.

We did make a turn from the rim and headed to Annie Creek Restaurant within the park boundaries.  It had good reviews on TripAdvisor.  We are not sure why the good reviews.  Expensive and awful food.  Not just bad food, but awful.  Pack a picnic lunch.  In our case, the main lodge was not serving lunch. So we though Annie Creek might be a decent alternative.  It is NOT.

One thing that we have started packing in the truck is foldable chairs.  Now a scenic view spot for lunch or reading a book is just seconds from unfolding.  In my case, I am usually more interested in nap, but forgot to pack the LaFuma.

1 comment:

niko the wolf said...

Thanks for the blog. Usually go out West during summer vacation. I always look over your blog for interesting places to visit.