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Mt. Mazama

(aka Crater Lake)

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Mt. Mazama skyline then and now

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Contrary to what many people believe, Crater Lake wasn’t formed by a meteorite. Its bowl shape formed after a mountain collapsed over 7,000 years ago. We learned all about those silly details during our visit.   * Click here to explore an interactive map of the Cascade range Volcanoes. We visited 5 of the 25 listed, but at least 15 show up in our pictures. Can you figure out which ones I’m referring to?

Given that Crater Lake and many of the other geological formations happened so long ago, I found some of the pictorial graphs extremely helpful in grasping the size and magnitude of those past events. For example, here is a graph comparing Mt. Mazama’s ash flow to Mt. St. Helens eruption in 1980.

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Ash flow comparisons

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I’m also including this pictograph of volcanic eruptions over the last 4000 years, cause I’m kinda nerdy that way.  Hmmm… round about 1000 A.D. seems to be a happening time in Cascade volcanic activity. Wonder why?

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Cascade eruptions over the last 4000 years

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Cheng and I even took the only access path down to the water for a close up view via boat tour. No, we didn’t swim. You might notice strange white mounds on some of our pictures. For all you Texans, that would be unmelted snow. In September. Anyone who knows us, also knows that Cheng is a bit of a weeny where cold water is concerned. So, instead of swimming, we played hide-and-seek with a rainstorm on the lake. As you can tell from the pictures, we won. The tour group scheduled after us wasn’t so lucky.

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