OR – Crater Lake National Park, Falling into Winter (Oct 2021)

I entered the Park from the north, I believe a first for me and took the East Rim Drive, one I’ve not taken for many years. It was about 1pm and a cold 36F. Visibility was limited but by 2pm I’d made it part way around the lake enjoying better and better views.

My favorite memory is taking the boat tour and learning about various geology including Pumice Castle.

I had hopes of hiking to the top of Mount Scott the next day.

By 4pm it was 33F plus wind chill, definitely not a good hiking day.

As the weather deteriorated, the temperature dropped to 31F by 4:15pm. The light on Llao Rock was magical. The wind across the water was wicked making for ripples and whitecaps.

I was accompanied by snow flurries as I drove toward the north entrance/exit. I fought with myself as to where I should camp and how much risk I was willing to take. Thankfully it only dropped to 36F in my car overnight, but yes I awoke to a few inches of snow.

It was a tough choice as to whether enter the Park or head for lower elevations ASAP. I just couldn’t skip this opportunity. First snow is always so exciting!

Driving in these conditions isn’t my favorite. It was 8:30am and I was second tracks although the snowplows passed going the opposite direction.

To say it was cold and windy is stating the obvious.

First views of the lake were a bit disappointing. Initially nothing but fog could be seen but with patience Wizard Island began to take shape.

At 9am it was 21F with gusty blowing snow. I was sure wishing for my winter gloves and warm boots.

And then the magic was revealed.

Adventure Date(s):

  • October 10-11, 2021

Resources:

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