It is completely understandable that Natives who lived, and live, around this magical place restricted who could view the lake, a body of water that fills the cavity left behind by the catastrophic volcanic explosion, then collapse, of Mount Mazama. Staring into this giant cauldron that holds one of the ten deepest lakes of the world, from nearly vertical cliffs 1000 feet above the surface that seem to want to pull you down into the water, one is simply mesmerized. In a slightly uncomfortable way, feeling strange emotions arise seemingly unwarranted and unexplained. Some spawned from the beauty and magnitude of the place, some from the left-over energy that exists after something so cataclysmic happened, even if it was just almost 8000 years ago. There was a feeling of uneasiness I felt there. How could the land NOT retain an energetic imprint left-over from what had occurred there?
The water is a deep but vibrant blue, but it is CONSTANTLY changing, sometimes appearing purple, white, orange, yellow. It reflects the sky above in its clean, pure, and clear waters – perhaps it is reflecting more than we know.
At its maximum the lake is six miles across. It is unreal to look at the edges of the rim of the original mountain that surround the lake at an average of 7000 or 8000 feet above sea level, and realize that you are peering into the center of what had once been a giant volcano which stood over 14,000 feet above sea level. It’s unfathomable that a piece of rock could disappear, or relocate, so quickly. You can see the profile of where the mountain would have once stood – yet, there before you is this emptiness. As I was leaving, there was a curious cloud formation that formed above the lake at what could be imagined to be where the peak once stood – it looked like a volcanic plume of ash, exploding and rising high into the sky above. Unforgettable.