The Crater Lake Visitors Center (8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. daily year-round, closed Christmas day), is located below Rim Village near park headquarters and can provide information, maps, and publications as well as backcountry permits and first aid.
If the lake is socked in by lousy weather, you can see it anyway: excellent films about Crater Lake are shown in the center’s theater every half hour and by special arrangement. For information about weather and activities at Crater Lake, visit www.nps.gov/crla or call 541/594-3000.
The original visitors center is on the rim. A rock stairway behind the small building leads to Sinnott Memorial and one of the best views of the lake. It is perched on a rock outcropping where accompanying interpretive placards help you identify the surrounding formations as well as flora and fauna.
As you drive north from Rim Village, a few miles on you’ll notice brown earth that spread out from the last major eruption.
by Judy Jewell and W. C. McRae from Moon Oregon, 8th Edition, © Elizabeth & Mark Morris and Avalon Travel