Crater Lake Wildflower Walk 8-5-20

Photos by Elisabeth and Rich

Hundreds of flowers, two waterfalls, a wildflower garden, a floral wall and dozens of sooty spires -- it was quite a day.  Sunny, Mike, Rich, Elisabeth and I played tourist on Wednesday up at Crater Lake.  Because of the bare bones services (only cafeteria and bathrooms open), the park did not charge an entrance fee. There were crowds of people up at the rim and lots of people on the trails, but almost everyone wore masks.

Thanks to Alex's suggestion we first headed to the Crater Crest -Wildflower Garden hike. The trailhead is located just across the parking lot at the south gate visitor's center.  And Boy is that hike well-named!  After a dusty beginning we encountered a wildflower extravaganza along a spring-fed slope with gurgling brook.  We spent about 2 hours on the roughly 1-/12 mile loop hike. 

Afterwards we lunched on the rim overlooking the lake where Mike found shading spot away from most of the crowds. 

Then we headed along East Rim Drive, with its narrow lanes, terrific views and dizzying dropoffs, to first Vidae Falls and then Plaikni Falls off the Pinnacles Road.  On the way we found your flower wall shot, Kaki! -- about two hundred vertical feet of solid color.   Plaikni Falls was worth the 2-mile RT hike and had some wildflowers, but really, we had been spoiled by the earlier Wildflower Garden. 

Sunny put in a request to see the Pinnacles and since none of us had ever seen them, we thought it a great way to end our tour of the park.  The Pinnacles are these weird tall Gothic spires rising from ashy Annie Creek Canyon.  Who knew we had hoo-doos?  We ended the day slurping ice cream cones at Phil's.

For those of you who have not heard, cherished AHG buddy Betty Lowe died suddenly last week.  She was her usual cheerful, talkative energetic self on Monday's hike so thinking of her no longer with us is a real shock.   John and Rich are organizing a memorial for her next Wednesday at Hobart Bluff so there will be no WW next week.  Among many, many other things, Betty was a knowledgeable and passionate flower lover and gardener.  I will be bringing along some rose petals from my garden to strew on the Hobart Bluff Overlook in her memory, perhaps others who are coming may want to bring things from your garden. 

Respectfully submitted Flower Floozy Liz

Ashland Hiking Home

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