Crater Lake National Park sets north entrance opening date
Herald and News
Klamath Falls, Oregon
April 12, 2001
By LEE JUILLERAT
Unusually low snow at Crater Lake National Park means that the park can schedule dates when it plans to open roads normally buried by deep snow.
The North Entrance Road is scheduled to open on Friday, May 25, according to Superintendent Chuck Lundy.
Over the years, the park has attempted to have the road open by the Memorial Day Weekend to enable travelers and vacationers to enter the park from the south or west entrances and continue north. Deep snowpacks and late spring storms have often frustrated those plans.
Based on current estimates, the Mazama Campground near the park’s south entrance is expected to open for the Memorial Day Weekend.
Crater Lake Lodge will open for the summer season on Saturday, May 19. Lodging reservations can be made by calling (541) 830-8700. General information about concession operations is available by calling (541) 594-2255.
The light snowpack should also benefit a longer construction season. Construction on rehabilitating the Sinnott memorial, Kiser studio, plaza comfort station and community house, all located in Rim Village, is scheduled to begin later this month.
The four buildings, originally built in the 1920s and ‘30s, are part of the Rim Village Historic District. The construction is intended to return all four structures to their historic appearance.
The park has received only 260 inches of snow this winter, well below the usual total of 533 inches. As of Tuesday, the on-ground snow total at park headquarters was 51 inches, well below the average 119 inches. Recent storms have upped snow totals, which had threatened to be the lowest in the park’s recorded history.
Lundy said the clearing of snow from Rim Drive is about three weeks ahead of normal. As of Tuesday afternoon, plows had nearly opened the road to the Watchman Overlook.
“The low snow levels are allowing park maintenance crews to make exceptionally rapid progress in clearing snow from the road. It is expected that Rim Drive around the lake will open around June 1,” said Lundy.
He cautioned that weather at Crater Lake typically remains unpredictable through May. Because late spring snow storms may still cause temporary road closures, motorists are urged to use caution on park roads and beware of ice, especially in the early morning and evening.
Updated road information is available daily by calling the park at (541) 594-2211, extension 402.