Beau talks about Crater Lake every year with this Love/Hate tone. He goes every year and then talks about how he doesn't think he will make it part of the trip the next. But since I had never experienced any of this before.....he wanted to make sure I got the full affect of how beautiful this back country is!
So as we were driving as far to the top of this mountain as you can go....there is just open land of beautiful wildflowers.
I kept thinking " where the heck is this beautiful lake?" and "how can it be beautiful if there are no trees?"
When we finally stopped to park. I was still slightly apprehensive but the mountain view made me think it was going to get even better.
You didn't have to start walking very far to get the view of the Lake from above.
And it did take my breath away!
I miss the crystal clear water of Idaho. The blueness was so beautiful.
Cedar has water, but from all the clay and red rock...it is muddy and mirky.
Crater Lake looked close and like a quick hike, but hiking across very loose shell rock is tricky. And with a handful of children it gets a little tricky too.
Overall though, I enjoyed the hike down. It was steep, but went quickly and provided lots the scenic views to photograph.
Beau pretty much carried Lukas the whole way down and the whole way up.
Here are some of my favorite views from the hike down.
These flowers were everywhere. (Not sure what they are called)
The older kids, who had been there before, were fast hikers. They were so anxious to get their poles in the water to start fishing.
One of the best things about Crater Lake was how secluded we were. It was just us with the WHOLE lake to ourselves.
Nobody to share it with.
I LOVED that.
Beau and Chris were the first to get their poles in and it took literally seconds before we started catching good size fish.
My dad made a fire so we could start cooking our fish right their too.
Caleb practiced "gutting" and preparing the fish to cook and did a really good job.
After fishing for hours and relaxing, we decided it was time we better start hiking out. It was overcast and we didn't want to get caught in a huge storm.
Plus, Beau and Chris kept telling us that it took awhile to get out. I was once again thinking "it wasn't horribly awful getting down...how bad can it be?"
I quickly learned why there is a love/hate feeling attached to Crater Lake. The hike is rigorous, steep, and in many parts straight uphill on shell rock that gives way suddenly. Being out of shape didn't help my hiking skills any. And if being out of shape wasn't enough, I was preggers but didn't know it yet. So I couldn't figure out why I was so shaky and incredibly lightheaded.
The views were still just as amazing though.
Lukas fell asleep and Beau lugged him out the whole way. I trip over my own to feet enough on a daily basis that I was grateful he was in charge of Luke and not me.
After a million "catch our breath" stops, lots of water drinking/ guzzling , and some "Whose idea was it to go to Crater Lake thoughts" we finally made it back to the top.
Kennedy was our only child who complained about the hike. Savanah and Caleb were at the top long before Beau, Kennedy, Chandler, and I.
Although the hike was hard on the way out. Crater Lake was still my favorite place we went of the whole trip. I can see now why it is LOVED and DREADED......but that view....oh it is worth every strenuous step uphill.
I hope to experience again someday.
It is prettier and more breathtaking than any picture could ever capture.
It sounds cheesy, but for me being in God's Country where you are secluded ,besides your family, is so spiritual. It gives me a sense of how precious, we, his children are. I always get teary eyed and find myself thanking Heavenly Father for the beautiful surrounding we get to enjoy.