Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The Caldera from the Boat

It's 700 feet from the top of the rim of the caldera to the elevation of the lake. The hike is close to a mile with gorgeous views around every switchback in the trail.

We had heard about the opportunities for swimming and fishing at the boat dock but didn't carry equipment down with us. Still, it was fun to watch the jumpers while we waited for our boat. (And you know the boys were plotting a plan for their next visit that would include swim trunks!).

The Umpqua carries 50 passengers along with the Captain and the Park Ranger. (I got a little worried when I saw the Captain putting on his heavy coat and hat!).

Seeing the rim from the water was amazing. It's up close and personal. I took many pics, but can't post them all here.
Maybe you remember those ridges I posted in the Ruby Mountains? Well, turns out they are called Shark Fins and are created by lava flows. Our Ranger shared excellent information, history and stories for the whole 2 hour trip.

My Hetchy friends will know that I was very curious not only about how they got those boats into the water but also where they were stored for the winter. (With 50 - 60 FEET of snow annually!). Mystery solved at Wizard Island where we saw several Boat Houses for a safe winter. Oh, and the boats arrived via helicopter!

From the West Rim road a tiny speck in the water on the far side of the lake is known as the Phantom Ship. It's a couple hundred yards from the East Rim and in a location with shallow water on the shore side and a drop off into deep deep water in the front. The change in color of the water from shallow to deep was marked and dramatic but hard to photograph!

Yet another amazing feature is the castle on the east rim.

To be honest, the wind and the waves breaking over us were not so much fun at the beginning of our trip. But our Captain was skilled and knew directions and speeds to run to avoid the worst of the waves. In the end, it was a fabulous trip and we had a blast!

One last camp fire and yummy s'mores ended our last adventure of the summer of 2011. (Umm, wonder what the Super Nephews are planning for next year?!?).


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