Jacob Leistra / "Game Boy" / PCT 2019

Day 95: Crater Lake

Mile 1814.0 -> Mile 1820.9 -> Road walk in and out of Mazama Village -> Mile 1823.0 -> Crater Lake Rim Trail -> Mile 1839.2 -> Mile 1853.9

I made it to the highway just outside of Crater Lake to see this sign. Apparently the PCT has a small section of closed trail due to increased mountain lion activity. Most hikers take the Crater Lake Rim Trail as an alternate to the PCT. I was going to to stick to the real PCT after doing a 4ish mile detour to see the lake. But if the PCT is closed, I’ll happily do the alternate to get some gorgeous views and cut 6 miles off my day (even though the terrain will be harder).

I ate two breakfasts at the Annie Creek restaurant because each one was so small. I then went to the Mazama Village store and paid over $30 for 1.5 days worth of food. Holy hell. After the sticker shock of food prices I headed towards the lake and started drowning in tourists. It’s crazy being on trail and totally alone for miles and then walking up a hill, crossing a road, and being among hundreds of tourists. Nothing kicks in anxiety like having your whole harmony/wa/rhythm thrown off in an instant.

I love Lake Tahoe, but Crater Lake is definitely the prettiest lake on the PCT (or near it). The size and spectacle are unrivaled, despite the tourists.

I ended up getting some trail magic from Tuba and her family. I met Tuba all the way back in Hiker Heaven, around mile 400 or something. It’s great seeing old acquaintances and friendly faces, especially when they give you fresh apples and strawberries!

Main Photo: Crater Lake viewed from the Rim Trail on August 13.