Packed a lunch, and Emma, and my cameras and headed for Crater Lake Nat’l Park this morning. It was a drive of about 85 miles to get there, but who knows if I’ll ever be this close again.
Along the way on Hwy 62, an Oregon Scenic Byway, I stopped at a Forest Service overlook to see the Rogue River Gorge. I think Sherry would appreciate that this part of the Rogue River has been left wild.
There was a nice paved trail that led to four overlooks of the cascading river. I was in no rush, so Emma and I took the trail.
There were some nice views of the river if you stuck your head through the fencing (or if you were much taller than I am). I’m guessing that most people skip this stop on their way to Crater Lake. It was a good chance for me to stretch my legs and enjoy a stroll in the forest. We had the place all to ourselves.
Eventually we reached the west entrance to the park. I believe it’s the only entrance open this early in the season. There is still enough snow cover in this high location that the East and West Rim drives aren’t open yet. If I were here a week later, the East Rim drive would be open.
Merikay had informed me that the quarter mile walk at the rim allows dogs, so that’s why I was able to bring Emma with me on this excursion. In season, there are also four trails that dogs are allowed on in this park. Not many National Parks allow dogs anywhere but on paved roads and picnic areas to my knowledge, so this was unusual.
And for a change, Emma actually seemed interested in looking at the lake rather than just keeping her nose to the ground. Because of the remaining snow, that quarter mile rim walk was limited to about 100 feet. I honestly can’t say we spent much time there, and could only see one part of this huge lake. The water sure did reflect the blue of the sky though. Perhaps I’ll be able to return when the rim drives are open.
Since we couldn’t go any further, we turned around and headed for home. Stopped for lunch at the Goodbye Creek picnic area on the way out. Once again, we had the whole place to ourselves. It was a gorgeous spot, and I just loved the smell of all those Douglas firs surrounding us.
Meanwhile, it’s Friday night in a state park. I haven’t spent a weekend in a state park in quite some time, and this place is brimming with weekenders enjoying their two days off. It’s good to see so many families out enjoying the area. Seems pretty quiet to me. Hope it stays that way…
Thanks for stopping by… talk to you later, Judy