Crater Lake National Park Guide

Located within the Cascade Mountains in southern Oregon, Crater Lake National Park is one of those places that give you a different perspective on the depth of the world. It’s known for Crater Lake, which is the deepest lake in the United States. What’s more, the park is full of evergreen forests, mountain peaks that hover over the land, and stunning cliffs almost 2,000 feet high. If you’re ready to make a trip to this national park on your west coast road trip, then here is everything you need to know about visiting Crater Lake National Park.

Know Before You Go

The most popular seasons to visit Crater Lake National Park are summer and winter. Snow is still present until June or July here, so be prepared for road closures and cold weather if you plan on visiting during the colder months or early summer. If you’re a hiker, then the best time to visit is during the summer.

Things to Do

From capturing images of picturesque lakes to exploring different trails on skis or foot, here are the best things to do in Crater Lake National Park.

Crater Lake

Explore Hiking Trails 

The old growth forest in the park offers some of the most beautiful hiking trails in the country. In winter, they’re a popular spot for cross country skiers. In the summer, the beauty of the waterfalls, wildflowers, and evergreen forests attract hikers from all over. Take the 2-mile Plaikni Falls Trail to hike by a waterfall or the popular 3.5-mile Garfield Peak Trail for the best view of Crater Lake, and much more.

Check Out Crater lake 

Crater Lake is the most significant feature in the park. It’s named Crater Lake National Park, after all. This lake was formed when Mount Mazama collapsed after it erupted thousands of years ago. Now, the lake is the deepest in the country and seventh in the entire world, at 1,943 feet. It’s surrounded by towering cliffs and is filled with the clearest water due to snowmelt. Crater Lake can often be spotted from several hiking trails, as well as on Rim Drive, which goes around the lake.

Take Your RV on Rim Drive

When it’s open, usually starting in June or July, taking the scenic Rim Drive in your RV is a must-do. The road is 33 miles long and offers stunning views of lakes, volcanic formations, meadows, and evergreen forests. It offers several lookout points that you can stop at, such as Crater Lake. If exploring by foot isn’t your thing or if you’re short on time, then this drive is worth it!

Boat Tours

Immerse yourself into the deep blue waters of Crater Lake by taking a boat tour with Explore Crater Lake, where you can get up-close views of Wizard Island near the western side of the lake, get a different perspective of the towering cliffs, and truly experience the depth of what this incredible park is.

Crater Lake

Where to Stay

Inside of the Park

  • Mazama Campground is only open from June to September. Full and electric hookups are available.

Outside of the Park

If you’re planning to head out to the Pacific Northwest on your road trip, then stopping at Crater Lake National Park to witness its beauty is a must. To make your itinerary even better, check out Timberline Lodge in Mount Hood National Forest, which was the movie destination for the film The Shining.

See you on the road!

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