Happy 100th to the gem of Klamath – August 23, 2002

Happy 100th to the gem of Klamath

Herald and News

Klamath Falls, Oregon
August 23, 2002
If you haven’t seen it, you should. There’s nothing else like it in the world, and it’s right here in Klamath County. It is the gem of this place.

Not much more needs to be said about Crater Lake and the national park that’s celebrating its 100th birthday this month and in ceremonies this weekend. But a few more things can be said.
Like a fine gem, the lake yields its delights in first gushes and then in enduring splendor. It’s hard to imagine getting enough of the lake.

The park itself offers vistas, hikes, climbs, auto tours, lodging, dining and, of course, souvenirs.

A child, taken early for visits, might spend a lifetime visiting the national park and not exhaust its possibilities. Nobody in Klamath County with access to a vehicle should complain of a dearth of family activities, at least not when the park isn’t buried in snow.

Together, the park and the lake constitute a powerful lesson in geology and the processes that shaped, and are shaping, our region. Once you’ve understood the magnitude of the explosion at Mount Mazama, you can’t contemplate Shasta and the other Cascade cones without a sense of awe.

Thanks to a $500,000 grant from the Jeld-Wen Foundation, another boon to Klamath County, and many smaller donations, the lessons about the natural world will be developed in the new Crater Lake Science and Learning Center, which was dedicated Thursday.

Besides becoming a center for research, the center promises to attract new visitors to the park, especially young ones, and its programs promise to bring benefits to schools throughout the region.

This will bring yet more luster to the gem of this place.