Crater Lake National Park features a caldera lake in south-central Oregon which formed following the eruption of Mt. Mazama approx 7700 years ago. There are no rivers entering or exiting the lake. These factors contribute to the lake’s clarity and deep blue color thanks to the absence of pollutants. The lake measures about 5 miles by 6 miles across, and at an average depth of nearly 2,000 feet it is one of the top ten deepest lakes in the world.
Two islands protrude from the lake surface. The larger one, Wizard Island, is a volcanic cinder cone that formed following the Mt. Mazama eruption. It stands about 755 feet above the lake surface. The smaller Phantom Ship island at the opposite end of the lake is a natural rock pillar that resembles a ghost ship.
We spent about four days exploring the park in July 2013, enjoying the area’s memorable sunset panoramas, lush wildflowers, and cascading waterfalls.