Crater Lake in 10 Beautiful Photos

The deepest lake in the USA, Oregon’s Crater Lake is one of the country’s most unusual and breathtaking natural attractions. This highly visual post features my favorite Crater Lake photos, taken on a recent trip to the eponymous national park.

Crater Lake: Violent Origins, Peaceful Present

Created by the cataclysmic eruption of Mount Mazama 7,700 years ago, this perfect lake is now the perfect example of a still lake.

When the volcano erupted, it blew ash and debris many miles into the sky while avalanches of pumice covered the surrounding landscape in dozens of feet of ash. It was nothing short of catastrophic. As the mountain spouted out its contents, it could no longer support itself and collapsed under its own weight. This left behind a huge, fuming caldera.

Eventually, rain and snowmelt gradually filled up the gaping caldera, creating what is now known as Crater Lake. Just because there are no springs or rivers feeding the lake, it contains some of the cleanest water on the planet. Visibility is incredible, while its stunning blue water is why the first Euro-American discovers named it “Deep Blue Lake”.

10 Beautiful Crater Lake Photos

To showcase the sheer beauty of Crater Lake National Park, the Crater Lake photos below include scenery from all over the park. Crater Lake itself is, of course, the star attraction, but there are also vast pumice plains, old growth forests and cascading waterfalls.

You can access virtually all major attractions in Crater Lake National Park on the Rim Drive. This superb 33-mile loop drive encircles the crater, making this one of the greatest American parks for cyclists. Check out the Crater Lake photos below to see what you can expect.

Wizard Island, Crater Lake National Park in Oregon

A volcano within a volcano, Wizard Island sits in the western part of Crater Lake.

Crater Lake Lodge seen from the Garfield Peak Trail, Crater Lake National Park

The Crater Lake Lodge is one of America’s most scenic historic accommodations.

Rim Drive in Crater Lake National Park, Oregon

To get around the park, the spectacular Rim Drive takes you around the entire lake.

Phantom Ship seen from Garfield Peak in Crater Lake National Park, Oregon

In the east of Crater Lake, you’ll find Phantom Ship, a rock formation resembling a sailboat.

Plaikni Falls cascades, Crater Lake Photos

There’s more to Crater Lake National Park than just Crater Lake, as Plaikni Falls beautifully showcase.

The Pinnacles in Crater Lake National Park

One of the most remarkable features in the park: The Pinnacles.

Wizard Island in Crater Lake National Park, Oregon

If your goal is to take pretty Crater Lake photos, there’s no better time than sunrise!

Old growth forest scenery in Crater Lake National Park, Oregon

Old growth pine forests cover much of Crater Lake National Park.

Weathered tree overlooking plains in Crater Lake National Park, Oregon

The forests share the landscape with empty pumice plains, other reminders of Mount Mazama’s eruption.

Sunrise at Crater Lake National Park, Oregon

For glorious Crater Lake landscapes, walk the beautiful Discovery Point Trail in the morning.

Did you enjoy these Crater Lake photos? Tell us in the comments which one is your favorite!

About Bram


Bram is a Belgian guy who's currently living in the USA. For over four years now, he has been wandering the globe, with jobs here and there in between. So far, his travels have taken him to four continents and twenty-two countries. Bram likes to try different styles of travelling: from backpacker and adventurer to tourist and local, he has been all those stereotypes and probably will be many more in the future. You can follow his adventures on his travel blog, on Twitter and on Facebook.

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