Sunday, April 19, 1998

Crater Lake and Northern California trip report

"Look at me, I'm Santa Claus!" -- another kid in the hot tub, after putting foam on his face

As crazy as it sounds, my family just came back from another spring break vacation. We visited Crater Lake in Oregon and several other places in Northern California on this trip. It was loads of fun, so be sure to read about our adventure!

Day 1

Our first stop was the Shrine Drive-Thru Tree in Myers Flat. As the name suggests, this was another one of those trees that people can drive through. The admission also included access to a three-story tree house that was built inside the trunk of an ancient redwood. The tree house wasn't that impressive, but it was still fun to go inside.

The next destination was the Redwood National and State Parks as there were some hiking trails in the area. This was only our second time here, so it was quite a fresh experience. The three of us then continued to Trees of Mystery in Klamath to see the iconic statues of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox. The rest of the attraction required an entrance fee, so we didn't go in. I figured this wasn't a big deal, considering that we had already seen plenty of big trees elsewhere.

As evening neared, my parents and I arrived at our hotel in Crescent City after driving a total of almost 400 miles. All of us were kind of tired, so we didn't do much else before going to bed.

Day 2

Our main stop of the day was Crater Lake National Park in Oregon. According to scientists, the namesake lake was formed after a volcano called Mt. Mazama destroyed itself in a massive eruption several millennia ago. I'm glad I wasn't there when that happened. The water-filled caldera didn't appear very large on the map, but it was hard to believe how big it really was when we got there.

We didn't stay for long except to take pictures as the weather was rather chilly at the lake, but I nevertheless thought Crater Lake was the best part of the trip. The lake wasn't the only attraction in the park as we also hiked some of the nearby trails. The scenery was no less impressive than that of the other places we visited.

The three of us were exhausted from all the traveling, so we decided to relax in the spa after arriving at our hotel in Yreka. While we were in the hot tub, this kid from another family proceeded to scoop up the foam in the water and smear it on his face, pretending to be Santa Claus. That was just gross - I mean, heaven knows what's in that stuff. *shudder*

Day 3

This was the last day of our trip, but there was still so much to do. The three of us took a detour to check out Whiskeytown Lake on the way home. There wasn't much to do here as the lake is mainly used for boating, but we got some great pictures. One interesting feature of the lake was the huge funnel-shaped spillway where excess water drains. But it was also kind of a scary sight as falling into it would mean certain death.

We also took pictures at what appeared to be a winter recreation area of sorts. Strangely enough, my parents and I were the only ones there despite the abundance of snow. I'm guessing it's because it's not winter. There were few other attractions on the way home, so the rest of the afternoon consisted of driving. This was no easy task as Yreka is almost 350 miles from our house.


The forests of the Northwest Coast are among the most beautiful places I've ever seen. As someone who loves the great outdoors, I enjoyed every part of the trip. The highlight of said trip was Crater Lake; it's a shame there aren't any similar places in the Bay Area. While I'd love to have a vacation home in the mountains, that will only happen if I win the lottery. But I can dream, right?

I have to go back to school tomorrow as this is the last day of spring break. Dealing with the holiday blues is always going to be the hard part of coming back from a vacation. On the other hand, summer is coming up in just two months. :-)

In other news...

I'll be going to Camp Costanoan next weekend. I'm a little nervous about it, to be honest!

Currently playing: SimTown

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