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Course description

Geology of Crater Lake introduces the tectonic setting, eruptive behavior, geologic history and potential hazards of Mount Mazama and the Crater Lake caldera during two evening presentations and a one-day field trip.  The field trip will give students opportunities to study a variety of volcanic and glacial features around the margin of the caldera as well as explore one of the world’s most spectacular lakes.

Course status

Course format

Geology of Crater Lake (GEOL 0830) is a non-degree-applicable credit course that is offered in a short-term lecture plus field trip format. Although the course may only be taken one time for credit, students who have previously completed GEOL 0830 and wish to learn more can enroll in its non-credit companion course Crater Lake Field Geology (XNH 0330).

Information on Volcano Boat Tour

During our upcoming class, Geology of Crater Lake, you will have the opportunity to take the boat tour of the caldera if you wish. The tour is conducted by the Park's concessionaire, Xanterra, and costs $35 (not included, unfortunately, in the registration fee for the class). If you have not taken the tour before I highly recommend it, but there are a couple of things you should consider before making a reservation: 1) We will be at the Park on Saturday 24-August and, because of our schedule, if you wish to take the boat tour you need to sign up for the tour that departs at 1:30 PM that day. We will drop you off by 1:00 PM so that you have time to hike down to the dock. (For folks who do not wish to take the tour we will have alternate field trip stops along the eastern margin of the caldera). 2) To reach the dock where the boats depart you hike down the Cleetwood Cove trail which descends 900 vertical feet to the lake. The trail is well graded and partly shaded by trees, but you'll want to bring water and a hat (especially for the hike back up). There are bathrooms at both the top and bottom of the trail. 3) The tour lasts two hours and you're out in an open boat with lots of reflection from the lake surface, so you'll want to wear plenty of sunscreen and bring a windbreaker in case things turn cool out on the water. 4) Finally, there will not be time for you to get off at Wizard Island but you can always come back and do that another time! The boat tour gives you a unique perspective on the geology of the caldera and is a lot of fun. If you would like to do it you can make arrangements through the concessionaire's website: http://www.craterlakelodges.com/activities/volcano-boat-cruises/. Remember, you need to sign up for the 1:30 PM tour on Saturday, August 24. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me. Looking forward to seeing you for our first class session on 21-August.