First Time at Little Crater Lake

The next morning Linda still wasn’t feeling well, she’s been fighting a nasty cold the entire visit, so Howard, Lee and I took the planned hike to Little Crater.  We had been hearing about the “mini crater lake” that was a short hike away.  There are multiple points to hike from, but I wanted Howard to see North Arm campground, so we drove up that way and parked and started out on a 1-1/2 mile hike to the site.  Once again we had beautiful weather and the trail was my favorite kind.  It was level, with minimal roots or obstructions, and the absolute best part was the carpet of pine needles which made the ground give a little.  Absolutely perfect!  It was also incredibly peaceful along the trail as we only saw four other people the entire hike.


Hiking with Howard (and Linda) is a ton of fun, because they are very educated on plants and birds.  Plus they are more than willing to tailor their speed to the people they are walking with and tailor their conversation as well.  Usually I treat hikes a little bit like I treat church, with quieter voices and conversations that are relevant to where we are.  We see people all the time walking in nature who seem oblivious to what is around them and are talking about all kinds of things, and frankly I don’t get it.  For me it’s less about the exercise and more about communing with nature and thankfully, Howard is a like minded guy.

I was excited when we got to walk a section of the Pacific Crest Trail..a first for me.


Howard pointed out these Trillium Flowers which have the same name as the lake we paddled the day before. I honestly never made that connection 🙂


No horses are allowed on the PCT but this hitching post gave trail riders a place to hitch up before going to Little Crater


The walk was very pleasant and it didn’t take us long to hit a meadow with lots of flowers and butterflies.  It was really pretty and we all took lots of pictures before turning a corner and arriving at little crater.

Path through the meadow



Howard said these butterflies rarely pose like this. I was able to get several pictures



Lee’s pic…it’s a beauty


Lee’s pic


Little Crater

The crater was much smaller than I expected (it’s actually an artesian spring), but it was very photogenic and we had the place completely to ourselves.  We spent some time taking pictures and hanging out until another couple arrived and we headed back.  The location didn’t have the grand scale of many other things we have seen, but the hike was pleasant and the company was great and I really enjoyed being out in nature.

It was amazing how clear the water was and how deep. These are full size huge trees in the spring.


Glad to see this posted, although I am not sure how much it is honored when it gets hotter, because the water stays cool all year.


Howard on the little platform


Lee and Howard taking a look at the one duck hanging out.


This sign explained how the “lake” was created


It was fun trying to get pictures of the reflections from the trees. I wish I could have gotten the entire tree and its reflection.. Howard came close with his camera.


We also saw this newt which it turns out is one of the most toxic animals on the planet. Who knew??


It really was pretty


After hiking out, we all went back to see Linda, who was feeling much better.  She made Kelly’s pot roast recipe in the instant pot and we had a wonderful dinner and some great conversation.  I love those campfire chats that go beyond the superficial and delve deep into emotions and feelings and this night absolutely qualified. It was a great way to cap off their visit, and I am so grateful that they managed to squeeze us into their hectic schedule.  I can’t wait to read about their adventures this summer in Washington State and Iceland, and if the timing works out we might get to see them again at the end of the season.  Love you guys and thanks for being great friends!

Lee is excited about the pot roast!


Howard and Linda


Lee, Linda, and Howard



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7 thoughts on “First Time at Little Crater Lake

  1. So loved this hike, and adding it to our list. I’m with you on quiet hikes. The flower photos are wonderful. The little white ones with 4 petals are actually cornus canadensis, in the dogwood family. Trilliums have 3 petals. Creeping dogwood is an indicator of moist soils in the Pacific Northwest. Fun fact, it is technically a sub shrub not a forb.

  2. Beautiful photos of a lovely hike!! Makes us smile to see the four of you enjoying life:o)) The next to the last photo, the one of H&L, revealed Linda’s cure for a bad cold… Yep, Wine & Chicken Noodle Soup… her secret is out ;o))

  3. GREAT pic of Howard & Linda….a classic! Very scenic hike……we also love the peace and quiet of nature. We take our side by side out on the trails here in South Dakota and just sit and listen to the wind blowing thru the trees and smell the wonderful aroma of nature! Glad you got to spend some quality time with your friends.

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