National Park Photo Feature: The Beerchaser/Crater Lake NP

Welcome back to National Parks and other public lands with T!  On a regular basis, we’ll feature favorite photos or stories from a friend in the National Park community. Are you a National Park fan with a favorite you think would be great for this series? Send me a private message through the contact section of this blog!

About these photos»

  • Place: Crater Lake National Park in Oregon
  • Date: 2017
  • Photo Credit: Don (The Beerchaser)

My wife of 41 years and I love the National Parks and since retirement in 2011 have traveled to many of them. She is a native Oregonian and I moved here after a three-month cross-country camping trip with my family in 1961 when we visited many of the National Parks and Monuments.

In 2017, however, we realized with chagrin that neither of us had been to the beautiful Crater Lake National Park – right in our own state. And it is the deepest lake in the US and the sixth oldest National Park. So, although it was early October and the potential for bad weather was possible, we made reservations for a night at the historic Crater Lake Lodge.

We arrived mid-afternoon after driving through snow from the Park entrance to the Lodge. We had reserved a room with a Lake view, but found that the pea-soup fog made seeing anything farther than ten feet was impossible. Realizing that we might have to return another time to see the pristine azure- blue water, we drank in the celebrated ambiance of the Lodge and had a wonderful salmon dinner.

Fortunately, the sun broke through the clouds and mist early the next morning and most of the snow had melted and we had a beautiful drive around the rim. About halfway around the massive caldera, we stopped for a hike on the Cleetwood Cove Trail. The switchback-laden trail descends at an 11 percent grade that drops almost 700 feet in just over a mile.

Outstanding views of Wizard Island and the Phantom Ship in the Lake were easily visible from the thirty-three mile Rim Drive that had frequent pull-outs to savor the view. Although we got off to a hazy start, Crater Lake is an outstanding National Park to visit.

Meet Don from The Beerchaser»

One of my initial retirement goals in 2011 was to eventually have a beer at every neighborhood tavern or brewery in Portland— and to blog about the experience. So a few months after retiring, with some help from my tech-savvy son-in-law, I started the blog.

By August 2012, I had reviewed 23 bars – all in Portland except one in Port Towsend, Washington. With one exception which was somewhat disappointing, all establishments were great to visit. This validated my premise that each bar or pub has an interesting history and distinguishing characteristics.

With retirement travel, the “journey” expanded. We started hitting bars in Europe, Alaska, various parts of the US from the Southeast to Montana and Wyoming and Oregon’s coast and desert country. Almost nine years later, I have visited and reviewed 375 watering holes. With 125 of them Portland area establishments and another 250 outside the City of Roses.

Each quarter, I also select an individual or group as my Beerchaser-of-the-Quarter. These people, almost all of whom I know personally, are military heroes, media personalities, academicians, authors and athletes. They may or may not have anything to do with bars or beer but have an interesting story and have made a contribution to society.

I became involved with the Benedictine Brewery at Mount Angel in 2016 as a member of the Brewery Advisory Committee. I helped set up the business operations as a volunteer before it opened in the fall of 2018. The Benedictine Brewery at Mount Angel is one of only two or three in the US, that is owned by Benedictine Monks and does its development, major production, and taproom service on-site, with monks doing the brewing and running their own operation.

 —Written by Don from The Beerchaser

Where can we find The Beerchaser?

3 thoughts on “National Park Photo Feature: The Beerchaser/Crater Lake NP

  1. I went there in 2015 on a bright sunny day. It also happened to be the day they held a bicycle race around the lake, which resulted in 3/4 or the road being closed off to all except contestants.

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