National Park #6 Planning: Crater Lake

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Wizard Island, Source: NPS.gov

Crater Lake will be the second stop on our ten day road trip after we visit Redwood National Park. All of our friends who have visited Crater Lake tell us it is an amazing, breathtaking place, so we are stoked to explore it for three days. We’ve read in a few places to consider cresting over the rim-line with your eyes closed so you can see the lake as a complete surprise.

Lodging:

We’ll be using the RV again for this park and will hopefully have a good routine in place with the girls for sleeping. We were a little late in booking our campsite, and because the window of opportunity is small for warm weather camping at Crater Lake, we missed out on getting a site within the park. We’ll be just north of Crater Lake at Thielsen View campground, about 15-20 minutes from the park.

Travel:

We’ll be driving to Crater Lake from Redwood and might stop at Oregon Caves National Monument along the way to take a short hike and stretch our legs. We wanted to explore the caves, but the girls are too young to go into the cave system per the park’s rules.

Kid factor:  

Crater Lake has a little island called Wizard Island that is supposed to be fun for hiking and lunch picnics. The bummer is that the girls need to be at least three years of age to ride on the shuttle boat, so we’ll have to try it in a future visit.

The other kid factor will potentially be cooler evening temperatures. The elevation is 4,000+ around Crater Lake so it will could get a bit chilly at night. In fact, the park always warns about icy road conditions in the morning, regardless of the month. That was another reason we thought the RV would be a good idea, to keep us a bit warmer at night.

Kid-tivities

Hiking! Or for them, sitting in carriers while Mary and I hike. We plan to tackle a few short, but enjoyable hikes while we are there.

Cleetwood Cove Trail – It’s 2.2 miles roundtrip, but is the only trail that goes down to the lake’s edge, so we’re pumped to get up close and personal with America’s deepest lake.

Watchman Peak Trail– This trail leads to an old fire watchpoint over Crater Lake. Another shorter hike in the 2-3 mile range, but it is supposed to have spectacular views of the lake.

Mount Scott Trail- This is the tallest peak in Crater Lake National Park and is a 4 mile round-trip hike with another great view.

We’ve heard so much about this place and can’t wait to see it in person. Share your tips with us. 

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Crater Lake with Mount Scott in the distance, source: NPS.gov

4 responses to “National Park #6 Planning: Crater Lake

  1. Pingback: National Park #7 Planning: Lassen Volcanic |·

  2. Pingback: National Park #5 Recap: Redwood |·

  3. Pingback: National Park #6 Recap: Crater Lake |·

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