A Lush Waterfall and The Ancient Spires of Nature

Lex sez:

We drove away from Crater Lake in search of other beautiful parts of this spectacular national park.  About three miles east of the park headquarters, we came across the gorgeous Vidae Falls.  This pretty waterfall has a 100 foot drop.  We pulled over to the turn-out by the side of the road, and Neek and I got out of the car to take a closer look.

Just standing by the side of the road we could hear the water falling and we took some pictures from there.  Then we both got a bit adventurous and started climbing up the side of the mountain to get a better view. 

We took some more shots of the falls and we could see that some people had hiked all the way up to the top!

But Neek and I didn’t have the toughest hiking shoes on, so after shooting some more of the beautiful natural setting, we headed back to the car.

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Then we drove around the mountain further until we reached Pinnacles Road.  We continued on to the parking lot outside of the half mile Pinnacles Trail.  I set up the wheelchair for Neek’s sister, Sar, having heard that this trail had disability access.

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For the most part, it was pretty easy to push her chair.  There was only a short stretch of the trail where the road was a bit sluggish with small rocks.

What are the Pinnacles?  They are a group of volcanic pumice spires that were formed in the time preceding Mount Mazama’s collapse 7,700 years ago.

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Some are long and skinny, others are big and thick.  They are all very tall and fascinating geological formations to view!  We took our time enjoying the splendor of this unique natural wonder.

Neek sez:

Traveling on the east rim of Crater Lake National Park in Oregon, Lex, my sister, Sar and I decided to stop to view Vidae Falls.  The snow-melt water bubbles up from the ground and makes its way down in terraces among the volcanic rocks and green landscape.

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We saw a few people climbing to the top but we decided not to since we were headed toward the Pinnacles.  It was such a refreshing and lovely stop but we continued on our way.

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We drove about 7 miles (1.3 km) on Pinnacles Road when it abruptly ends at a parking lot.  The trail is wheelchair accessible so my sister was able to enjoy the experience.  The wheelchair was quite easy to push in the beginning but got more difficult as the trail became more gravelly.  I’d give it about a “6” for accessibility.

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Walking along the trail, we saw the most amazing looking structures that are both beautiful and mysterious looking. The Pinnacles reminded me of gothic cathedral spires or the spires on La Sagrada Familia in Spain.

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The tall needles like formations are known as fossil fumaroles.  They were formed under a layer of pumice before Mount Mazama had collapsed from its eruption to form Crater Lake.  Gasses escaped through vents in the volcanic rock creating fumaroles.  When this cooled down, the continuing gas being expelled from the rocks made the fossil fumaroles that you see today.

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It’s not a very long or challenging trail to walk.  There are no hills to climb but it’s advised to use caution near the cliffs.  I was happy to be able to enjoy this with Sar and Lex.

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