“I like the in-betweens. I like the time it takes to get somewhere…” – The Front Bottoms
I’m a planner. I like to know where I’m going because long road trips cost money and I can’t afford to make expensive mistakes along the way. But at the same time, I’m willing to be spontaneous – I’m obviously a walking contradiction.
Crater Lake, however, was one of the best unplanned trips I ever took. By the way, did I mention that this was my first long solo road trip? It’s the farthest I’ve ever driven completely on my own. Before that, the farthest solo road trip I ever did was 7 hours. So this was a pleasant surprise.
I also realized I brought the wrong charger for my GPS which I didn’t need until I was a few miles from the park entrance and realized there was no signal. At all. It’s not an adventure without a few stumbling blocks along the way right?
My phone was fine I had it on google maps but if you accidentally hit end (like I did)…You’re basically screwed. But this is where a map comes in handy. The park ranger gave me a map and I was easily able to navigate around Crater Lake without much trouble. It also helped I had enough experience driving around National Parks. The paved roads are narrow and a bit winding with the most awesome views.
There are places where you can park which provides a bird’s eye view of the famous Wizard Island.
If you walk around it’s pretty stunning and quite peaceful. The path is huge and accessible for all ages. I went early so there were only a few people walking around.
Since this is my first time in Oregon I was definitely happy about my first stop. I’m glad it ended up being part of my itinerary.
Oregon definitely captured my heart right from the very start. I knew I was in for a lovely and unforgettable journey.
Bel’s tips for this trip
1. There is an entrance fee to enter this park. I paid $25 for a 7-day pass (single vehicle entrance fee). You could also get an annual pass if you plan to visit several National Parks within a year. It will save you money which is currently $80/year.
2. Make sure you have a full tank of gas before entering the park. It’s far smaller than Grand Canyon but it’s also in a remote area.
3. Bring bug spray. There are huge bugs in the park. It was the only part I didn’t like during my trip. Please check out the link below. This really works.
4. Please bring a GPS and make sure you have a map of the place. You can use your phone and save your trip on google maps but I still prefer having a real GPS that always has a reliable signal in most places. I’m kind of old school about this. I’m aware you can preload maps in your cell phone but it’s nice to have a backup in case your phone crashes on you. Obviously, if you have an installed GPS on your car that’s just as good. Please see link below for my recommended GPS.
5. Bring your camera – to take awesome pictures!
6. Last but not the least, have an amazing time like I did.
I hope you enjoyed this post. Please feel free to comment. I’d love to hear from you.