Crater Lake’s Backyard Attractions
Be sure to mention this website, ThingsToDoNearCraterLake.com, when visiting these attractions.
NEWS FLASH: Free guided snowshoe walks at Crater Lake NP every Sat. & Sun. through late April at 1:00 p.m.. Ages 8 and above welcome, with snowshoes provided. Reservations strongly recommended. (541) 594-3100.
Crater Lake National Park.
32-mile drive along the rim of the deepest US lake, formed 7,000 years ago by an ancient volcano. Restaurants, lodge, cabins, campground, gifts, deli, boat tours, gas. Visitor center 541.594.3000. Lodge 541. 594.2255. 2013 Season (weather permitting): Rim Gift Shop & Café open year-round, closed Thanksgiving & Christmas. For 2015, Lodge/Dining Room open May 15-Sept 27, Mazama Gas May 22-Oct 12, Mazama Store May 22-Oct 5; Cabins May 22-Sept 29; Campground May 29-Sept 27 (weather permitting); Boat tours June 28-Sept 21 (weather permitting).
Crater Lake Zipline. Experience Oregon’s epic zipline adventure. 30 minutes S of Crater Lake NP, discover 9 mega long ziplines, rappels, challenging skybridges, a free fall QuickJump and breathtaking mountain, forest and lake views. This tree to tree canopy tour is 3 hours of thrilling adventure and a lifetime of memories. Just. Let. Go. (541) 892-9477. 29840 Hwy 140 W.
The Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway/All American Road
winds through a fantastic volcanic landscape, stretching from California’s Lassen Volcanic National Park to Crater Lake National Park. Our section follows Westside and Sevenmile Roads from Hwy 140 to Fort Klamath and on along Hwy 62 to Crater Lake.
Jackson F. Kimball State Recreation Site.
Locals take visitors first to Crater Lake, but then they stop at Kimball on the way home. The cold clear turquoise water at the headwaters of the Wood River isn’t just beautiful, it’s better than that. Visit the Paddling page for information on Wood River and other paddling opportunities.
Spring Creek Picnic Area offers more turquoise at the creek’s headwaters. Head north on Hwy 97, and turn left on USFS Road 9732. The area is no longer maintained as a picnic area, but the headwater springs are there to enjoy.
Fort Klamath Museum.
1863 military post with “cavalry guide.” Exhibits, fort relics, pictures. Gift shop, picnic area. Modoc warrior gravesites. May 25 to Labor Day, W-Su, 10 am-6 pm. 52699 Hwy 62. 541.381.2230.
Klamath Fish Hatchery.
The hatchery produces about 3 million fish each year, providing legal-sized trout to Klamath and Lake Counties, and fingerlings for lakes from the southern Cascade Mountains east to the Idaho border. Open daily, free. 7:30 am-4 pm. Buy food here to feed the big fish. 46161 Hwy 62. 541.381.2278.
Wood River Wetlands.
3,200 acres BLM-managed wildlife habitat with excellent year-round birding. Day use, restrooms, picnic tables, canoe/kayak launch, ½ mile paved trail, 10 miles of unpaved trails. Motorized vehicles restricted.
Klamath and Western Railroad.
Anyone who’s wanted to ride the rails will love a visit to this non-profit organization’s playground dedicated to preserving railroad heritage. They run on 1.9 miles of track through ponderosa pine forest and provide free Saturday rides on a 1/8 scale train from Memorial Day to Labor Day, 10 am-3 pm. New for 2014 are a speeder, a train order signal, and a baggage car. They have an extensive variety of souvenirs, an award-winning diner serving hot dogs, hamburgers, drinks and snacks, and a grassy knoll for picnicking. They also arrange birthday parties and offer Pumpkin Runs Oct 17 and 24, 2015. 36951 S. Chiloquin Road. For information call 541.783.3177.
The “ World’s Longest Hobby Railroad” is just west of Klamath & Western at 36941 S. Chiloquin Rd. With over 30 miles of 7 ½ inch gauge, 1/8 scale mainline track winding through 2,000 acres of forest, they welcome visitors Mon – Fri 10-3 for a self-guided walking tour of the grounds. Please call at least two weeks in advance to arrange special events and tours for groups of 15 or more. 541.738.3030 See the world’s largest collection of full-size real cabooses, and a rotary snow plow last used during the 1960s. Stop at the gift shop for lots of railroad-themed items. They also provide facilities for weddings and other special occasions.
Klamath Tribes Headquarters.
Inside décor features baskets, artifacts, and historical pictures. The public is welcome, but tours are by appointment only in this place of business. 10 am-5 pm, M-F. 501 Chiloquin Blvd. 783.2219.
Owned/operated by the Klamath Tribes. Open 24/7 with over 350 slots, blackjack, full service bar with big screen TVs, and sit-down restaurant with great food. Free RV parking with RVer discounts, ATMs, weekly promotions, and exciting giveaways. 34333 Hwy 97 N. 541.783.PLAY (7529).
Best Little Bookstore’s maze of rooms in a made-over home houses over 100,000 new and used volumes, stacked floor to ceiling—even in the restroom. Selections vary from collectors’ classics, to instruction manuals and comic books, to historic novels and rare finds that commonly elicit the declaration, “I remember this from when I was a kid.” Not just a bookstore, this little gem is an afternoon’s entertainment. 414 Chocktoot, Chiloquin. Open every day. CALL FOR CURRENT HOURS. 541 783.2002. Connected to the bookstore is Treasures Next Door with vintage vinyl records, vintage furniture, and other collectibles. Open every day. CALL FOR CURRENT HOURS. 541.281.5787. Further downtown on 1st St., visit Kircher’s old-fashioned hardware, Two Rivers Gallery (see Arts page), The Crazy Disc, cafes and a bakery.
Visit Klamath Falls, 30 minutes south of Crater Lake’s Backyard, if you need some “city” experiences while you’re here. Tour the vibrant downtown, bowl at Hanscam’s and Epicenter, attend a play or concert at Linkville Playhouse and Ross Ragland Theater, or see a movie at Pelican Cinemas. Museums and galleries include Children’s Museum of Klamath Falls, Klamath Co. Museum, Favell Museum of western art and Indian artifacts, and Klamath Art Association Gallery. There are sports at OIT and Kiger Stadium, and events at Klamath County Fairgrounds. There’s golf at Running Y Ranch, Shield Crest, Harbor Links, and Round Lake Golf Course. Collier Ice Arena at the Running Y offers open skating and hockey in winter. A bit further south is Lava Beds National Monument with caves, Native American rock art, campsites, historic battlefields, and the site of a WWII Japanese internment camp.