Crater Lake Rim Scenic Drive is a 50.2 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Crater Lake, Oregon that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for nature trips, bird watching, and scenic driving and is best used from May until October.

Length50.2 miElevation gain5885 ftRoute typeLoop
Kid friendlyNature tripsScenic drivingBird watchingForestLakePavedViewsWildlifeSnowFee
Description
Waypoints (20)
Tips
Getting There

Crater Lake National Park charges a fee to enter. Fees are $30 per vehicle (Winter Rate: $25) or $25 per motorcycle (Winter Rate: $15). Winter rates apply between Nov 1 - May 21. If you are entering on foot or bike the fee is $15 per person. You can also purchase a park specific annual pass for $55. This route will take you on a drive around the 33 mile Crater Lake Rim Road stopping at the best viewpoints in Crater Lake National Park along the way. The route starts from the northern entrance to the park. At the entrance gate they give you a brochure on the area. You will definitely want a full day to enjoy all the views.

There is a $15-20 National Park Fee per car to enter the park and the park usually doesn't open until late May. You will want to call the park to find out if the rim road is open.

From I-5 in Roseburg Take 138 to Crater Lake or from Bend on the west side take 97 south to 138 for Crater Lake.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (59)
Photos (265)
Recordings (21)
Completed (292)
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Nina Fitton
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SnowshoeingSnow

Super snowy, so the Rim Drive road was closed - so we snowshoed along the road itself (since the trail isn't visible/accessible beneath the snow). Lots of snowshoers and x-country skiers. Rolling hills, mostly forested, with viewpoints of the lake along the way. Great day out! Went roughly 4 miles out, round the back of The Watchman, before turning back.

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Frank A
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Scenic drivingGreat!

gorgeous drive :)

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Frank A
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Scenic drivingGreat!

Awesome views of the deepest clearest lake

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Chanpone Sinlapasai
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HikingGreat!

Best way to see the entire Lake! It’s beautiful and magical in so many ways. Stop to see the waterfalls, it’s worth it. Not great for those scared of heights so keep them close and in the car. Today we could smell the smoke from the fires and you loose visibility at some lookouts. Go early and take the short hikes, so beautiful. When we got to the castle you can make out a face on the side of the rock. Which was totally cool and we made up the story of the princess of the lake watching over everyone. See the picture - pretty cool.

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John Lee
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Hiking

Beautiful awesome!!!

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Kaivalya (Kai) Chotard
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Hiking

Amazing!

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Blake Riley
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Scenic driving

7/26/20: Beautiful drive. Came in thru the north entrance and the view was really hazy. Once we got around to the south side (with the sun at our back), the view got much clearer. Would recommend going clockwise which would put all of the viewing areas on your right, thus easier to pull in and out.

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Nicole Marston
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Hiking

Crater Lake Park will change a person. The most beautiful place I have ever visited in my 30 years on earth.

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Chris Richardson
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Hiking

Gorgeous. A must do for anyone. The fact that a 12-14,000’ peak once dominated is incredible.

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Roger Jenkins
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Scenic driving

Crater Lake is an enchanting experience. This drive will let you view the ‘Crater Lake Blue’ from everyone direction. For my full trip report with pics and story go to: https://nationalparkshikingpursuingbalancethruadventure.wordpress.com/2020/01/26/scenic-rim-drive/

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Matt L
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Hiking

Breath taking trail. This is an official alternate for the PCT so we had to do it. Fantastic awe inspiring views. We did this in September 2019 on Friday morning so it wasn’t too crowded. Camped in the national park campground the night before then started on the rim trail the next morning. Ended the day at Grouse Hill campsite

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Adam Sheaffer
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Hiking

Almost nothing better. I highly recommend timing your visit near sunrise or sunset. The star views out here can legitimately change a person.

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Rachel Lundy
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Hiking

Beautiful drive with absolutely breathtaking views. Be sure to stop for a few hikes as you make your way around the loop.

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Kuljas99 .
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Scenic driving

Magical place, you can drive up to the lake :)

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Barbara Smith
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HikingClosedSnow

My hubby and I did this yesterday! We attempted this on Saturday but it was already 3:30pm (it was extremely crowded) so we decided to try our luck on Sunday morning. We got to the south entrance on Sunday around 8:30am and there were only 2 cars ahead of us. The ranger will give you a clear map of the rim drive. There are roads still closed and some snow in a few areas. We drove most of it and only hiked up for the views. This lake is gorgeous! The bluest lake I’ve ever seen! It’s definitely worth the trip! PS...my recording is off because I forgot to start it!

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Justin Ziegmont
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Scenic drivingClosed

We went in late June and the East Rim Drive was closed still. Otherwise it was a beautiful drive around the lake! Would definitely come back!

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rilene ann
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excellent, go at begin of season or end of season and go early!

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Sarah Brandenburg
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Spectacular!

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Jbears Jbears
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Hard to believe, but it's even more breathtaking then you ever imagine it to be.

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Michael Webberley
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Beautiful drive with lots lookout points and trails.

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Mike Kim
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Scenic driving

Stunning views. But keep an eye on the road as you drive. There are no guard rails to keep you from going over the side. Common sense right? It gets crowded on weekends so bear that in mind as well. For those with little children and with little time, this drive is quite nice.

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Brian Krulish
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Scenic driving

One of the most stunning natural wonders I've ever seen. I was mesmerized by the deep blue color of the Lake...I've never seen a shade of blue like that before. Unfortunately my time was only limited to a couple hours at Crater Lake..had to catch a flight out of Portland and had to stop and witness this national treasure...just enough time to drive around the rim and hike down at a point to take a very brief dip in the frigid waters. Will return some day for sure

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June Orleander
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Scenic driving

Great way to see all of Crater Lake. It wasn't crowded so it was an easy drive. Plenty of scenic lookout stops to take great pictures of the lake, Wizard Island and Phantom Ship from various vantage points. There were road constructions on a section of the West Rim, so the surface if the road was rough there, but the rest of the road was fully paved.

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Ian Kinsey
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OHV/Off-road driving

Not really off road, but it doesn't get much better than this! Go to this place

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Lynn Curtin
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Scenic driving

East Rim was close. There was road construction on West Rim and unpaved roads. Otherwise the drive is really fun. There are lots of viewpoints to stop and take pictures.

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Glenda Dupler
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Scenic driving

Such a beautiful piece of nature. I have never seen water this color blue, absolutely breathtaking!

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Bill Crain
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Scenic driving

Awesome out of the ways drive you have to really want to do.... only once but I'd like to go back and spend a week hiking.

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Kenny Meyer
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Scenic driving

This was a fun drive and pit stop on my friends and my road trip. The road twists and turns and affords beautiful views of crater lake and the surrounding areas. There is some congestion around cleetwood cove. Overall it made for a fun detour from our road trip south

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Jeff Tomlin
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Scenic driving

Beautiful

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