Island on Crater Lake
Outdoor Activities

Take a boat tour of Crater Lake

After you have gone to all the trouble to drive to the middle-of-nowhere to Crater Lake National Park in Central Oregon, it’s a good idea to budget half a day at least to explore the lake by ranger-led boat tours. This is the only way to get on the water because recreational vessels are NOT allowed.

We suggest you commit to the boat tour before you go and make reservations. The tours are so popular, you need to plan ahead to get the day and time you prefer.

Crater Lake and Boat Tours
Crater Lake is the deepest lake in the United States, and one of the deepest in the world. One of the best ways to experience Crater Lake National Park is to take a Standard Lake cruise around Crater Lake, and for the truly adventurous, choose one of the options to spend time on Wizard Island.

Whichever tour you choose, you will need to hike approximately 1.1 miles down to the boat dock. Due to the strenuous nature of the hiking requirements to access the boat dock, these tours are not recommended for anyone with medical or physical problems that may limit them from this exertion. Please note, operations of the tours are based upon weather conditions and subject to change.

The Standard Lake Cruise will allow you to learn about the history, geology, and cultural significance of the lake, while viewing the natural beauty of the caldera from the boat.

The Wizard Island options include morning and afternoon departures, and will allow you time to hike to the summit of Wizard Island and enjoy the phenomenal panoramic view or simply fish or even swim. The morning departures give you the option of the full lake tour and three hours at Wizard Island, or six hours at Wizard Island with a partial Lake tour. The afternoon departure that shuttles guests to and from Wizard Island, with three hours to spend leisurely exploring the island.

All guests must make the 1.1-mile (2.2 miles roundtrip) hike on Cleetwood Trail to access the lake and boat dock. This hike can be very strenuous, as it drops approximately 700-feet, and it may take 30 to 45 minutes to descend the trail and reach the water’s surface. Upon returning to the boat dock, it is time for the 1.1 mile hike out. This hike can take an hour or more, and the 700 foot ascent in elevation is the equivalent of climbing more than 70 flights of stairs.

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