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Wizard Island - Crater Lake Oregon
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© Christine Till
Crater Lake National Park, the only national park in Oregon, contains one of the most remarkable natural features in the world. This feature - the dominant element of the park - is the massive crater lake contained in the caldera formed by the collapse of the ancient volcano known as Mt. Mazama.
Crater Lake's Wizard Island is one of the most interesting features of the lake itself. It was named by William Gladstone Steel, who felt that the island resembled a sorcerer's hat. The island consists of a symmetrical cinder cone almost completely encircled by dark, rugged flows of lava. Wizard Island looks relatively small within the large lake and the high rim walls, but make no mistake: The summit of the cone rises 763 feet above the lake, and the area of the cone and lavas exposed above water approximates a square mile. Were it not for the sparse covering of trees, one might suppose that the eruptions had only lately ceased, so fresh is the appearance of both the cone and the flows. The lower part of the island is covered by hemlock and Shasta red fir, while the upper portions feature whitebark pine along with Manzanita and wildflowers. There are about 100 plant species on Wizard Island. The oldest trees on the island are about 800 years old. In the vicinity of Wizard Island moss can be found on the lake bottom as 60 to 200 feet deep. This is possible because of the extraordinarily deep penetration of light in Crater Lake.
Wizard Island has been considered to be the most spectacular cinder cone in the world. If the island could talk it would tell many tales from its volcanic past. There's nothing like it!! A natural wonder in the midst of deep, deep water that is the bluest blue!!! Crater Lake and Wizard Island is a rare and magical one of a kind find.
March 5th, 2013
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