You’ve heard about it. You’ve read about it. You don’t believe anything could be as beautiful as described in so many blogs, travel articles, photo journals, and yet, after a nice easy climb out of Klamath Falls on Route 97 and Route 62 and up the flank of the volcano you come around a corner at 7100′ and there it is. More stunning and breathtaking than you ever imagined.
Crater Lake was formed when Mt Mazama, which had been building itself up over a period of 400,000 years, finally blew its top some 7,700 years ago and through a series of geological events could no longer support its own weight and collapsed, forming a caldera that is now the deepest lake in the country. While presently dormant, Mt Mazama is still considered an active volcano as are a number of other volcanos in the Cascade Range.
Hundreds of years of rain and snow filled the caldera (a volcanic basin) where the mountain top had once stood, filling it with waters of the most unimaginable blue, clear and reflective, shimmering in the sunlight.
It stretches at its maximum 6.02 miles across, is 1943 feet deep at its deepest, and holds over 4.9 trillion gallons of water.
Not finished with it’s violent eruptions that initially created the lake, Mt Mazama continued to spew forth over the following several hundred years, creating cones along the basin floor, the tallest of which cracked the surface of Crater Lake and is called Wizard Island.
We were fortunate to be there on an almost perfect bluebird day, treated to a pristine vista highlighted by a few wispy clouds that reflected in the vibrant waters of Crater Lake. Ya gotta go there !
Anthony Bourdain died a few days ago and his loss was felt not only among renowned chefs around the world but by the common person with whom he forged bonds that tied a life of imagination with our real world. His books and shows are beacons of light into the fascinating world of cooking, and his latest show, Parts Unknown, takes us to the far flung borders of the earth, exposing us to cultures and cuisine that we have never heard of. He made life a little more interesting and through his vision our world a little more accessible. Sorely missed. So as I was reading about his copious works, his menus, his travels, I wondered if he had an all-time favorite menu, a go-to that he made when not burdened by the rigors of international cooking and travel. Of course he did not, but I did find his favorite pasta menu which indeed might have been his favorite meal ever. Bourdain called Cacio e Pepe the world’s greatest pasta dish and did not want to reveal the restaurant where he first ate it, fearing that throngs of tourists would ruin its charm. But it didn’t take long for the world to discover Ristorante Roma Sparita, and the Italian version of mac and cheese exquisitely made with only four ingredients.