My parents had taken me to Crater Lake once before when I was a preteen. It was a family vacation, you know the ones where you, all your family members and half your house are stuffed into a car, having to listen to your parents music (oh the horrors!) or worse a book on tape (and yes, I mean an actual cassette tape!)? We spent a week camping and exploring southern Oregon and even my preteen self had to admit we were having a good time. One of the places we went to see was Crater Lake. I remember thinking then how beautiful it was; the water was the clearest blue water I had ever seen. As we drove back down the mountain on our way back to the campground I remember thinking that I had to come back some day.
Fast forward about 15 years and I found myself this past summer stuffed into our family car with my husband, 2 1/2 year old son and half our house caravanning behind my parents headed to the same campground and sights in southern Oregon. This time however I got to listen to my music on an ipod or from Pandora, no books on tape or cassettes to be found! Oh how the times had changed! I was giddy knowing that I was going to get to show my son all the cool places that I had seen when I was a kid. We started from home in Sacramento at about 6am and reached our destination in Klamath Falls, OR before sun down.
I couldn't wait to walk to the lodge with my son and eat ice cream sitting at the lake's edge as we watched the sun set. I couldn't wait to swim in the lake and go fishing and eat s'mores around the campfire each night. But most of all I couldn't wait to see Crater Lake again.
Finally on Day 3 of our vacation we loaded the car with lunch and our backpacks and headed to Crater Lake. To get to the lake you have to wind through a lot of farmland and really small towns that don't have a stop light or even a gas station! If you've never been you may feel like you are lost several times until next thing you know you are at the base of the mountain! There is a sign as you enter the National park that makes a good photo stop. There are also a few turnouts along the road that have spectacular views of canyons that were created by lava flows and later water erosion. Before you know it you are at the park entrance and you wind your way up another few mile to the mouth of what was once a great volcano.
We were there in July and there was still snow on the ground so be prepared to bring a jacket and warm clothing when you go! Once at the top you have several options. there is a lodge that you can go in and enjoy lunch at. The lodge also has restrooms and a nice history of Crater Lake display. There is a large gift shop should a souvenir be something you want to get. There are tour buses that will take you around the lake, but I prefer to just drive the lake myself and be able to stop when I want to take pictures. There is also a lookout point that you can walk down to that offers a great view of the lake as well as a lot of information about how the lake came to be and other facts like depth, temperature of water, etc.
I can't say enough how beautiful the water is!! I grew up seeing the gorgeous blue water of Tahoe and honeymooned in Jamaica with it's clear water. If you merge the two bodies of water that is what Crater Lake looks like. Seriously... It's amazing! To see my son's face in awe when I explained that he was standing on a volcano was priceless. To be able to visit a place and it looks exactly the same and the water is still the same amazing color is priceless. I will say that as an adult I was able to comprehend a little bit more the magnitude of how special Crater Lake really is.
If you haven't been I highly recommend you do! It is breathtaking and awe inspiring that anything that beautiful can come from a destructive volcano. You won't regret taking your children there and who knows maybe they'll take your grandchildren their in another 15 or so years!
These days it is always nice to hear about a business that has stayed open for a significant amount of time, rather than another that is closing in this economical climate. We are happy to announce that Angels Camp RV & Camping Resort is celebrating 7 successful years in 2013 and are celebrating by having a PARTY!!!
On April 27th, 2013, the park will open their doors to their guests and the public in order to celebrate with as many people as possible. The festivities start at 11am and go all day, with activities for the whole family. There will be free hot dogs, chips and soda during lunch and many activities like:
Wood Carving at 1:30 & 3:30pm by Neil Egan (featured on the Discovery Channel)
Games w/ Prizes, including hula hoop contest, 3 legged race & water balloon toss
The day will conclude with the lighting of the new fire pit and karaoke on the back porch. The owners at Angels Camp RV & Camping Resort would love to reserve a spot for you today and see you at this big celebration. For more information and to make reservations call 209-736-0404 or visit their Facebook page.
After the turkey has been carved and eaten... after the pie has been sliced and served... after the family has said their goodbyes and are on their way home... means it's time to sit back, relax and start thinking about what the people on your Christmas list might be wishing for.
Yes, that's right I said Christmas!
Whether you are the stay up all night standing in line type or the sit-in-your-pajamas on Cyber Monday type, everyone wants a great deal!! We here at myCampmate want you to know about a great deal for the outdoorsman on your list from Purificup!
Purificup, a portable water purification system that uses nano-silver technology, is offering a 30% off discount AND free shipping on any water filtration system, starting on Thanksgiving morning. The special runs all day Thanksgiving AND all day on Black Friday. This is a great deal that makes safe, clean drinking water an affordable gift.
Each system has a 3 stage filter system that eliminates 99.99% of bacteria, parasites and pathogens. (Click HERE for more information on how it works.) You can rest assured that no matter how gross the water you start with, the end product will be clean and safe. The filtered water has a clean taste and doesn't have that traditional "carbony" taste that other filters leave in your mouth.
A Purificup system is a welcome addition to any outdoorsman's pack but is also a great item to include in a home emergency survival kit. In light of the recent storms on the East Coast, many families have been talking about and preparing their own emergency kits. Why not have Santa put a water filtration system under the tree this year as a gift to the whole family?
Click HERE for reviews by experts who have used and loved the Purificup system and click HERE to take advantage of this awesome deal and order a Purificup system! Don't let this great deal pass you by!!
Last minute camping trip with my sister and her family? DON'T MIND IF I DO!
Secluded campsite with lakefront tent sites? I'M ALL ABOUT IT!
When I was invited to a last minute camping trip with my sister, I was more than excited. We headed to Snag Lake Campground in Plumas County at the base of the Sierra Mountains.
Having never been there before, I didn't know what to expect. Right off of Highway 49, there is one small sign that reads Snag Lake Campgrounds and it's very easy to miss. This particular campground has a bulletin board right past the entrance that says "Fees for this site start in April 2012" but there was no drop box, envelopes or park ranger we saw throughout the weekend so we camped for free! Another bonus!
This campground has five or six sites, all very spacious and abundant with beautiful trees and plants. They include a fire pit and most of them have their own picnic tables.
All around the sites are beautiful places to explore and hike. The altitude was definitely a factor I had forgotten about when I took my hike because I got winded after about 20 minutes but the picturesque surroundings kept me going.
Considering our group had two infants and two rambunctious dogs, we had to be careful about where we stayed so we weren’t obtrusive to other campers. This site was perfect for those parameters. Also, being right on the lake, we got plenty of fishing in. The boys pretty much only had to cast their lines before they were reeling in decent sized trout.
About a mile before the entrance to Snag Lake, there is a bigger lake with a boat dock called Salmon Lake. There are two smaller lakes that connect (Upper and Lower Salmon Lake) and we spent Saturday at Upper Salmon Lake. It had an island just off the boat dock that we were able to get to by wading in the water up to our stomachs. The water wasn’t too cold and it was a bit of an adventure getting the babies, chairs, food and beer across to the island.
On the island was a rock perfect for jumping in the water with more adventurous jumping rocks nearby that I wasn’t brave enough to delve in to.
We passed through the most adorable “town” if you can call it that on our way up to Snag Lake. On our way out of town, we stopped at the only restaurant in town for breakfast. It was the best biscuits and gravy I have ever had. Imagine: this hole in the wall of a place that had about six tables inside was a secretly delicious spot! Also, breakfast wouldn’t be complete without a cookies and cream milkshake to take on the road (also amazingly delicious!).
I ended my weekend at Snag Lake with only a few mosquito bites, a mild hangover and a full belly. I would go there again, knowing that a spot like this would accommodate a family group, my rambunctious friends or provide the ideal romantic excursion.