Crater Lake in Oregon (United States) is a caldera lake formed from the collapse of the volcano Mount Mazama in roughly 5500-6000 BCE. Human interaction with this area has been traced back to the ancestors of the Klamath Tribe who are purportedly watched the eruption of Mount Mazama itself. Crater Lake is not filled or drained by any river. Water disappears via evaporation and is filled by rain.
Crater Lake has inspired people for thousands of years. No place else on earth combines a deep, pure lake, so blue in color; sheer surrounding cliffs, almost two thousand feet high; two picturesque islands; and a violent volcanic past. It is a place of immeasurable beauty, and an outstanding outdoor laboratory and classroom. It represents the depth and breadth of nature in action and its long term interaction with humanity as a whole. The Kalmath tribe continues to use the area for their visions quests, following a tradition that is as old as the lake itself.
Animal life inhabiting the area—nearly all of which is protected wilderness—includes deer, bears, eagles, hawks, owls, and grouse, and, particularly in summer, there is an abundance of songbirds and insectivorous birds. Crater Lake contains limited numbers of fish (trout and salmon), introduced by humans. The area’s plant life is predominantly pine and fir trees, with wildflowers covering the meadows in summer. The connection to nature is apparent during every season.