CRATER RIM TRAIL
PCT DAY 6: Saturday July 1st , 2017
Alternate to the PCT
8 miles ( 12.8km)
Mazama Village looked like it had just opened for the season. The PCT hiker section of the campground was closed as the area was under snow. There was still a lot of snow around the rest of the campground. Disappointingly the laundry and showers were closed and despite the mountains of snow, the Crater Lakes area was under water restriction. So that left us only the recharging of batteries as chores in the village.
We had planed to have a rest day in Mazama but discovered that the campground was fully booked due to the Independence Day holiday. We stayed the morning recharging batteries and had lunch at Annie Spring Restaurant. It was a happy coincidence as we met up again with Eddie, Burns and Don’t Panic who just arrived. Great to have lunch together and share our experiences over the past few days. The burgers were a little disappointing but the company was great. The village was very busy with holiday makers and we were happy to leave the crowds.
We hiked out as smelly and dirty as we had arrived. Following the Annie Spring trail we headed to Crater Lake to hike the rim. It was hard work, much steeper then the PCT trail grade, it was hot with lots of mosquitos and through snow all the way. But being a bit more rested we managed to cover the 5 miles to the Ranger Station in about two and half hours.
Seeing Crater Lake is always a buzz. It is such a stunning natural wonder with unbelievably crystal clear aqua blue water. And being such a beautiful clear sky day added to its beauty. We kept stopping to take pictures. The rim trail was under snow in sections and a few miles in we called it a day. As it is not permitted to camp along the rim trail there is a campsite near Lighting Spring, about 3 miles north of the Ranger Station. Hoping to see the sunrise over the lake in the morning, before rejoining the PCT.