Photo Friday: Crater Lake, Oregon

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On the very final day of our road trip, just as we were about to head back down into the 100-degree heat of Northern California (at last!), SVV and I found ourselves busting out our parkas once more for a quick detour up to Crater Lake.

No, your eyes don’t deceive you. The date was June 26, and there was still this much snow on the ground.

And not just a little snow, but A LOT of snow, too.

Apparently, this is actually semi-normal and not just due to the nutso weather that followed us around the West, as the guided boat tours out on the lake only run from July 1 through mid-September each season. Most of the trails and part of the drive around the lake was still closed, too, so our stay at Crater Lake was quite brief.

Still, I wasn’t expecting this on the drive up from Lake of the Woods, which had been warm enough for me to wear a sundress just that morning.

I mean, seriously—snow? I know I said I miss ski season, but I was plenty fine holding out a few more months.

While I really wanted to see a glassy lake with insane reflections (this was all I got before the fog set in), I must say the snow did only serve to enhance the beauty—as did the haze, which scattered the sun rays and formed a rainbow ring above the lake.

And I couldn’t help but appreciate the irony: Our summer road trip started with snow and ended with snow! Mother Nature is one big prankster. And at present, I am in Oklahoma City, where the mercury sat at 107 degrees at 8pm, and you better believe this very parka is easily accessible JUST IN CASE.

I mean, really, when it comes to my luck, you just never know. Best to be prepared.

*****

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COMMENTS
  • August 4, 2011

    Deep breath and repeat after me. Climate change caused by global warming includes extreme weather of all kinds — NOT JUST HOT WEATHER! Great shots. And, my, you have a handsome husband, too.

    • August 5, 2011
      Kristin

      Hahaha, being Californians, that’s ingrained into our psyche. But I did not expect such storm systems to swirl around the country so late in the game, always positioning themselves exactly above where I happened to be visiting! It was crazy. Two years ago, we were at Tahoe on May 20 in bathing suits (it’s when Scott proposed); this year, during that very week, we had our ski gear on and the chains on the trailer and it was months before we got to take off the boots and parkas.

      And yes, he’s the handsome one in this relationship, and I’m fully OK with that!

      • August 5, 2011

        No, I think you’re a perfectly matched couple!

  • August 5, 2011

    Being that we have suffered through 108 degree days here in Texas, your post comes at a perfect time – I can see the cold, crisp air in your pics!! Thank you!!

    I started a link up party @ travels on my blog and this would be a perfect one to link up if you have the time (feel cheesy asking). It is called “Friday Daydreamin”” and this is a perfect post for that! Thanks for the consider.

    ~Becca

    • August 6, 2011
      Kristin

      We just drove through Amarillo yesterday and Oklahoma, where it peaked at 113! So yes, I can now completely relate with what you’re living with this summer =)

      Just added to your Friday Daydreamin!

  • August 5, 2011
    Jen

    Beautiful! I think that first picture would fit nicely in an adventurer sort of magazine! πŸ˜‰ We visited Wyoming in June a few years ago and we encountered snow also. This Florida gal was in shock and was totally unprepared!

  • August 5, 2011

    Well, at least the one shot you got of the glassy reflection was a stunner! Looks beautiful–and after the insanely hot weather we’ve been having here in Chicago (and I can’t believe I’m going to say this), a little snow right about now sounds kind of nice.

    KIND OF.

    But maybe not, you know, in August.

    • August 6, 2011
      Kristin

      Yeah, maybe not…wait until end of September, at least, before you start wishing for that =) Because you know inevitably you’ll be in the middle of a Chicago winter in February and all, “WHY DID I WANT THE SNOW AGAIN???”

  • August 5, 2011
    Rhi

    So, so lovely! And, climate change has nothing to do with the snow at Crater Lake. That’s all quite normal πŸ™‚ (did you know you can Scuba dive there? BRRR!)

    • August 6, 2011
      Kristin

      Not only does that sound cold, but I can’t imagine there’s a whole lot to see! (That’s true of pretty much every lake.) But the view from above the surface was definitely worth the chilly drive!

  • August 5, 2011
    Ris

    I love the pics of cold weather–makes the heat wave we’re enduring right now seem a little bit more bearable!

    • August 6, 2011
      Kristin

      Now that we’ve driven through Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma and Tennessee in the past four days, I totally get what the rest of the country has been complaining about! Though we had such cold on our Western road trip and then 56 degrees and fog back in San Francisco that the heat was actually a welcome break for us =)

  • August 5, 2011

    Crater Lake is breathtaking under almost any conditions. The average visitor doesn’t see the snow. Your reflections are Excellent!

    Hope you don’t melt in the Oklahoma heat and humidity. πŸ˜‰

    Did you hear it snowed on Table Mt in ZA? Keep that parka handy.

    • August 6, 2011
      Kristin

      113 degrees! That was the high in Oklahoma yesterday.

      And I had no idea there was snow on Table Mountain–guess you’re right, I DO need to pack my parka after all! (Was going to risk it and take all summer clothes…you’d think I would have learned by now!)

  • August 5, 2011

    Wow. I only recently learned about the existence of Crater Lake on a totally random and slightly work-related google search for the deepest lake. It’s looks beautiful and I’m surprised by that much snow this late as well. I can’t imagine what it’s like in the depths of winter.

  • August 5, 2011

    Beautiful pictures! I love the Cascades and all the amazing volcanoes. When I lived on Whidbey Island I could see several from my deck, including Mt. Baker and Mt. Rainier. Never did make it to Crater Lake, though. Thanks so much for sharing — now I know I have to go next time I’m in the neighborhood. πŸ˜€

  • August 5, 2011

    On my big national park tour, this was one of my favorite stops. It was late August so there was very little snow, but it was still quite cold. I assume you didn’t jump in the lake?

    http://www.kriskoeller.com/blog/2007/08/25-greetings-from-crater-lake-national-park.htm

    • August 6, 2011
      Kristin

      Ha, no, but don’t put it past me–I did jump into the Arctic Ocean wearing just a bikini!

  • August 5, 2011

    Everytime I hop around the blogs on Photo Friday I am embarrassed to find more and more that I have not checked out in my own backyard. Crater Lake isn’t THAT far for us. Why haven’t I been??? Well your photos sure have put it to the top of my list.

    • August 6, 2011
      Kristin

      I think that’s pretty common. I lived in Tennessee for 22 years (and just moved back today!) and hadn’t done hardly any “tourist” attractions until I wrote an entire book on the state just last year! It’s easier to go on vacation elsewhere and skip the popular things to do in your own home, as you always think “well, I can do that anytime, really” (and then never end up getting to them!).

  • August 5, 2011

    I was just talking with my partner this morning about how much snow there still is in the mountains here in Washington. We were thinking of doing a fave summer hike at Mt. Baker and then found out it has 30 FEET of snow still!

    At any rate, your pics with the snow reflecting in the lake are gorgeous.Good thing you were prepared!

    • August 6, 2011
      Kristin

      Are you kidding me?! To someone who grew up in the South and spent the past four years in the mild weather of California, that is simply mind-boggling.

  • August 5, 2011
    k

    Crazy how close you can be to the deserts of eastern Oregon and still find snow!

    • August 6, 2011
      Kristin

      It was bizarre. We drove through so much of the state and it was insanely green, then got to the crater and BAM! Snow everywhere!

  • August 5, 2011

    Beautiful! I especially like the picture of the mountain’s reflection in the lake. Can’t wait to visit Oregon someday.

  • August 5, 2011

    Love these pics!!! Especially #2 πŸ˜‰

  • August 5, 2011

    Swoon!

    xox

  • August 5, 2011

    We were in South Lake Tahoe in early July and I couldn’t believe how much snow there was in the mountains, too. Crazy weather this year!

    • August 6, 2011
      Kristin

      Some of my friends went skiing at Squaw on the Fourth of July! Absolutely insane seeing as the ski resorts were set to close around April 10 earlier this year.

  • August 5, 2011

    Lovely photos of beautiful scenery, but I adore that dog!!! He blends right in!

    • August 6, 2011
      Kristin

      She’s an Eskimo dog! Or a Sasquatch–whichever way you prefer to look at it =)

  • August 6, 2011

    The pictures are gorgeous! We’ll be seeing Crater Lake in October, so it will probably look much like this.

  • August 7, 2011

    The extreme weather does follow you a bit, eh? Great pics. And, again, love the one of Ella. She should be your new mascot. πŸ˜‰

  • August 8, 2011

    Your hubby looks mighty handsome in that 1st pic! These pics are just breathtaking!!!

  • August 11, 2011

    Looks like you’re driving through a glacier! Super-scenic views πŸ˜€

  • August 11, 2011

    Oh my gosh – how CUTE does that little puppy look in the snow!! What kind of dog is that? πŸ™‚

    Sara

    • August 11, 2011
      Kristin

      Thank you! She’s a one-year-old Maltese named Ella. We’re quite obsessed with her and take her everywhere with us =)

  • August 12, 2011

    Beautiful photos!

  • August 22, 2011

    Great shot. I especially like the first two shots! Too funny about the snow in June (I was in it in on Grouse Mountain in Vancouver in June) but makes for a good story!

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