North Entrance Road

North Entrance Road

  1. North Entrance Road
  2. South Entrance Road
  3. West Entrance Road
  4. Munson Valley Road
  5. West Rim Drive
  6. East Rim Drive
  7. Pinnacles Road

From the Diamond Lake (North) Junction on Rim Drive, the North Entrance Road runs 9.2 miles north to meet state highway 138. Open pumice fields and features like Red Cone (7363′), Bald Crater (6478′), and Grouse Hill (7412′) dominate the panorama as visitors ascend from the northern park boundary to the Crater Lake rim.

Golden-Mantled-Ground-Squirrel
Golden-mantled Ground Squirrel by Larry Eifert – fondly known by many as a ‘GMGS’.

Golden-mantled Ground Squirrel – watch out, these small squirrels tend to dash across the roads of Crater Lake. Slow down and give these guys a break.

North Entrance Road – see top of map

Total distance: 9.2 miles

1

Northern park boundary

(mile 0.0)  Highway 138 enters Crater Lake National Park amidst a forest of hemlocks and Shasta red firs.

2

North Entrance sign

(mile .18)  You will find an Entrance sign here. This is s a nice location for a photograph.

3

North Entrance Station

(mile 0.75)

4

Lodgepole pine forest turnout

(mile .88)  At this elevation in the park lodgepole pine is usually the first tree to gain a foothold in areas denuded by fire or other catastrophes.

5

Pumice Desert Entrance

(mile 3.7)  At this point the visitor leaves the lodgepole pine forest and enters the Pumice Desert, a broad flat in the northern section of the park. This desert was covered with pumice and ash more than 200 feet deep in some places by the explosion of Mount Mazama. It has only started to be invaded by scattered lodgepole pines. Due to its scarcity of organic matter, few plants have taken hold to further enrich the soil. Straight ahead is Llao Rock with the point of Hillman Peak to it’s right. Mount Scott is to the southeast.

6

Pumice Desert Turnout

(mile 4.26)  There is an interpretive marker here describing the origins of the Pumice Desert. Desert Ridge and Desert Cone lie to the northwest and Timber Crater is to the northeast. This is also a great location for photographs. Timber Crater (7,403 feet) is to the Northeast.

7

Lodgepole pine forest

(mile 4.3)  The road reenters the lodgepole pine forest after leaving the Pumice Desert. Looking back toward the Pumice Desert, one can see Mount Thielsen.

8

Grouse Hill

(mile 5.2)  To the left (east, as you drive south) is Grouse Hill, an old dacite flow. It is steep-sided and wooded. Diller, an early geologist, supposed that the lava of Grouse Hill was older than the Llao Rock flow. There is, in fact, no way of deciding which of the two flows is the older. Probably they are of about the same age.

9

Red Cone

(mile 6.0)  To the right (west, as you drive south) is Red Cone. This is the best preserved, the largest, and probably the youngest of the three northern cones. Much more lava escaped from this vent than from Desert Cone or Bald Crater.

10

Llao Rock Outcrops

(mile 6.4)  The dacite outcrops to the left are a part of the Llao Rock lava flow.

11

North Junction

(mile 9.2)  This is the junction of the North Entrance road, the northern extend of the West Rim Drive (head to the northeast), and East Rim Drive (drive to the south). Continue on to the south (West Rim Drive) to find the Rim Village.

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