Accommodations and Food
One of the nicest things about 183,180-acre Crater Lake National Park is that it’s not very developed. Lodging and services are concentrated on the southern edge of the lake at Rim Village; the exact opening and closing dates for services changes from year to year, depending on the snowpack.
In general, restaurants and information services are open mid-May–October, with the exception of The Cafeteria, which is open year-round, serving traditional breakfasts and lunch and dinner offerings that include a salad bar, cook-to-order entrées, and deli sandwiches.
The Watchman Deli Lounge is located upstairs above the Cafeteria and is open noon–11 p.m. mid-June–Labor Day. The menu includes hamburgers, deli sandwiches, pizza, and snacks, as well as microbrews, espresso, wine, and spirits. Service can be slow, but the great view from the second-floor window makes up for it.
Even though it’s called a lounge, families are always welcome. A small grocery section in the adjoining gift shop sells basic foodstuffs and beverages in case you’ve run out of peanut butter and beer.
In 1995 the Crater Lake Lodge (541/830-8700, www.craterlakelodges.com, late May–mid-Oct., $151 and up, lakefront rooms extra) reopened to full capacity—71 guest rooms—after years of restoration. The lodge is situated on the rim south of the Sinnott Overlook and is hewn of indigenous wood and stone. The massive lobby boasts a picture window on the lake and has decor echoing its 1915 origins. The stone fireplace is large enough to walk into and serves as a gathering spot on chilly evenings. Many of the rooms have expansive views of the lake below. Others face out toward upper Klamath Lake and Mount Shasta, 100 miles away in California.
Amid all the amenities of a national park hotel, it’s nice to be reminded of the past by such touches as antique wallpaper and old-fashioned bathtubs (rooms 401 and 201 offer views of the lake from claw-foot tubs). This marriage of past and present in such a prime location has proven so popular that it’s imperative to reserve many months in advance. The 72-seat dining room ($20–29), for Northwest cuisine in a classic setting, gives preference to reservations made by hotel guests.
Seven miles south of the rim is another cluster of services called Mazama Village. At the Cabins at Mazama Village (541/830-8700, www.craterlakelodges.com, June–early Oct., cabins from $126), each guest room features two queen beds and a bath, and two are designed for wheelchair access. Be sure to call ahead for reservations.
Also in Mazama Village, Annie Creek Restaurant (3 meals daily, early June–Oct., light meals $5–10) serves pizza, pasta, salads, and soups. Beer and wine are also available.
by Judy Jewell and W. C. McRae from Moon Oregon, 8th Edition, © Elizabeth & Mark Morris and Avalon Travel