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Crater Lake is a fairly ridiculous place. 7,700 years ago a volcano decided to explode and over time it settled down and solidified. Rain water and snow melt collected to form the 9th deepest lake in the world at 1,932 feet at the deepest point.

We resupplied and did laundry in the morning, then headed up to meet 8-Track at 11am on the Rim itself.

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I swear I was there....

If you see a boat in the pictures, you can schedule tours and actually go out to Wizard Island, the 732 foot volcano erupting out of the lake.

After 3PM, we said goodbye to 8-Track (thank you so much for coming, it was great fun), finished our beers and started a 10 mile hike around the rim.

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Circling the wizards below.

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From the west side, notice the smoke rolling in.

As we hiked around, the smoke began to gather like a fog and we kept hiking north to outpace it a bit (the trail would be closed the following day). We camped near the PCT trailhead where it meets the rim trail and enjoyed spaghetti with hiker friends from a former hiker providing trail magic.

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Our friend Shepard, with smoke rolling in...

Until around 11PM when we were forced to move by Park Rangers for reasons that are still murky….thanks for protecting and serving, forcing hikers to move from the woods to another spot in the woods in the middle of the night:)

That said, if you haven’t been to Crater Lake, you are making a mistake