Continuing north from redwood country, we crossed the border into one of the few states of the lower forty-eight I’d yet to set foot in: Oregon. Did you know that in Oregon it’s illegal to pump your own gas? It was news to me.
The northernmost stop on our trip was Crater Lake National Park. Crater Lake is an old volcanic caldera that’s been filled in by precipitation to become a freshwater lake, the deepest lake in America and ninth-deepest in the world. According to some of the signs we saw there, it’s also (by some measures) the single clearest body of water in the world. In the lake is an island with the intriguing name of Wizard Island, so called because its conical shape reminded someone of a wizard’s hat.
But our sightseeing wasn’t quite done yet after left Crater Lake behind. As we headed back south through California our route happened to take us by what you might call the back door to Yosemite National Park, so we drove on up into the Sierras to eat a picnic lunch in Tuolumne Meadows. (We’d already seen the better-known part of the park, the valley, on another trip a couple years ago.)
So, with this shot of a lupine on the bank of the Tuolumne River, I come to the end of my chronicle of this trip to the West Coast. Tomorrow I fly back to Ohio, and the following day I’ll be on my way from there down to Georgia, where I’m starting my new job next week. Until then, my friends!