EUMR – Day 2b

Day two was pretty full, what with the town of Grass Valley (pop. 160) and Bend (pop. 75,000) all by lunchtime, that I had to split the day into two posts.  Because the afternoon of day two was all about Crater Lake!  Whoo Hoo!

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I was amazed how quickly I was here. I had always thought Crater Lake looked amazing, but thought it was really far away in Oregon. I was here in a day and a half of easy riding! I can’t wait to go back again in the summer.  It’s past the season for the park and they were expecting snow any day. For that reason, it was nearly totally deserted (in truth, it seemed that everyone from Central Oregon had just stepped out when I was riding through…it was deserted everywhere). The lodge was closed and the gift shop was open, but only until about 4PM on week days (closed when I got there, but it’s OK…I didn’t need any gifts.)

Apparently, Crater Lake was once Mt. Mazama (I think that’s the name) and it erupted, as west coast mountains are wont to do, forming the lake sometime in the past. Because the original mountain was pretty tall, there are no peaks higher than Crater Lake that were close. OK, fewer words, more pictures.  This first one was just riding through Crater Lake National Park.

Crater Lake National Park

Here are pics of the lake itself. I’ve seen pictures taken in summer where the lake perfectly reflects the blue sky but it was slightly overcast when I was there, so no brilliant blue. Pretty neato none the less.

Crater Lake 2

Crater Lake 2

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I set my camera on a post…not too bad.  Of course, there was NO ONE to take a picture for me because it was deserted. I was actually a little nervous riding through the park at one point because it occurred to me that if something happened, there were very few cars going by from which to get help. Of course, nothing happened, but it made me slightly nervous for a few minutes.

Crater Lake

There’s a small island in the middle of the lake called Wizard Island. One couple I met who work at the park and are locals called it “The Wizard”. I liked that.

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The sun was setting and really lighting up the sides of the lake, which looked amazing. The couple I met took this picture of me.

Sunset on Crater Lake

One more of the sun setting. At this point it was getting cold and I had not figured out where I was staying for the night, so was getting antsy to get on the road. I knew there was a lodge that overlooked the lake, but it was boarded up for the season…kind of like “The Shining”.  Slightly creepy.

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So the couple I met recommended Jo’s Motel in Fort Klamath…about 30 miles south of the park. On the way there, I passed a car (they were so few and far between that it caught my attention) on the side of the road with a guy taking pictures of the sunset on a barn. I took some too…here are a couple (including one with the bike in it to prove I was really there.

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Very soon after these pictures (2 – 3 miles), I came to Jo’s Motel. I’m glad I was looking for it, I would have gone right by. This place was COOL! If you ever head this way, make a reservation. I met the couple who owned/ran the place. It was uber-clean (really…I looked…it was freakishly clean) and they had an organic grocery store too.  This was probably the neatest place I stayed (not as swanky as the place on Cannon Beach, but cooler).

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How cool is this room with the neato fire/furnace? No telephone (wired or wireless) or TV, but they had movies for loan. That wrapped up day two.  How freaking cool was this day? The Columbia River, Bend and Crater Lake?!  I can’t believe how much cool stuff was so close to home. Tomorrow we leave Jo’s Motel and head toward the coast.

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