Sparkling and radiant blue and surrounded by rugged cliffs, Crater Lake is instantly captivating and breathtakingly beautiful. We visited Crater Lake National Park on a sunny Saturday and spent the day exploring the park and once again marveling at God’s amazing handiwork.
We drove the loop around the lake, which seems to be very popular with cyclists, and stopped at various overlooks and view points. The lake appears so different from different perspectives, including an island called the Phantom Ship, which depending on light angles, wind and water conditions, can sometimes be seen clearly and other times not at all. It resembles an old pirate ship, and its disappearing and reappearing act earned it the name Phantom Ship.
A clear view of the Phantom Ship, the small island centered between the trees
After we’d circled the lake by car, it was time to lace up our shoes, strap Peter in the backpack carrier, and hike up to a watchtower for views that you just can’t get to with a car. It was a relatively short trail with a pretty steady climb up to the watchtower, which is still used occasionally by rangers watching for fires, though these days most of the fire patrolling is done from the air.
She needed to bring her phone on the hike, so she could make important calls
Still loves being in the backpack carrier!
Granola bar break
Emelie and Pappa look out over the water
Family photo at the top of the watchtower
When we’d finished our hike, it was already time to return to our campsite at Lemolo Lake Resort, about 30 miles outside of the national park, where we stayed Friday and Saturday nights. This family-owned campground is open year-round, and the family that lives there and runs it has to homeschool their kids because it is 80 miles to the nearest town. And for the same reason, we missed church that Sunday morning. We decided on Saturday night not to set an alarm and have a stressful morning with an early deadline to pack up the camper and get on the road all in an effort to make it to a town in time for worship. Instead we took our time and when we hit the road, we were California bound!
Campground Review: Lemolo Lake Resort
Price: $27.50 per night
Location: relatively easy access to Crater Lake National Park. There are also some other lakes in the area. Otherwise, it’s close to nothing.
Facilities: Bathrooms were rather primitive but had flushing toilets and running water. Showers were coin operated and cost $2 for approximately 3 minutes. No thanks. No playground, no wifi, no place to wash dishes. A basic campsite with electricity and water.
Site description: grass and gravel. Lots of trees and plenty of shade.
Neighborhood: Lots of families with kids, plus retired RV-ers and others. No problems with noise at night. We didn’t really have much contact with our neighbors.
Comments: Behind the office/restaurant building is Lemolo Lake, which offers fishing. When we were there, the water level was so low that the docks was just sitting on the beach. It was a pretty view though.