I am standing on the rim of a giant volcanic caldera, peering out at one of the world’s most remarkable natural wonders. Crater Lake was formed by the collapse of the giant volcano Mount Mazama over 7,000 years ago. The huge crater left behind slowly filled with rain and snowfall over many years, resulting in the lake you now see. It is estimated that it took about 720 years to fill the lake to its present depth. At 1,949 feet it is the deepest lake in the United States, and the ninth deepest in the world. There are certain places in the world that a person seeing it for the first time will be struck with awe. This is surely one of those places.
There are two land formations that can be seen when viewing this massive lake from the rim of the crater. The most prominent of the two is known as Wizard Island. After the major eruption of the volcano there were smaller eruptions that occurred over many years. These resulted in the formation of several cinder cones that rose up from the base of the crater. Most of these cones are not tall enough to be seen above the surface of the lake. What you see here with this island is the peak of one cone that rises above the surface of the lake. On certain days the clear, still water reflects the deep blue color of the sky and the puffy white clouds as seen in this photo.
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Dimitri Vasileiou • Editor