Ever wonder why Rim Drive is closed during the winter? At an average elevation of 7,000 feet, both East and West Rim drives sit high in the Cascades and receive on average about 50 feet of snow each year. This snow is shaped by strong winds into drifts that can be more than 30 feet deep in some places.
During spring opening, newly exposed road surfaces become seasonal opportunities for visitors to hike and bike without having to worry about cars. Be sure to walk in the middle of the road to avoid snow and ice from collapsing snow banks. And make sure to give park vehicles and heavy machinery plenty of space.
While spring opening is underway, please remember that winter conditions still rule at Crater Lake this time of year. Snow and ice may continue into June. Also, as the snow begins to melt it can become more unstable. Remain far back from the edge of the caldera wall.
Last updated: May 15, 2016