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Crater Lake

Photo of this volcano
  • United States
  • Canada and Western USA
  • Caldera
  • 2850 BCE
  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 42.93°N
  • 122.12°W

  • 2487 m
    8159 ft

  • 322160
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit
    Elevation

  • Volcano
    Number

The Global Volcanism Program has no activity reports for Crater Lake.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Weekly Reports available for Crater Lake.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Bulletin Reports available for Crater Lake.

This compilation of synonyms and subsidiary features may not be comprehensive. Features are organized into four major categories: Cones, Craters, Domes, and Thermal Features. Synonyms of features appear indented below the primary name. In some cases additional feature type, elevation, or location details are provided.

Eruptive History

There is data available for 5 Holocene eruptive periods.

Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
2850 BCE (?) Unknown Confirmed   Radiocarbon (corrected) Lava dome ENE of Wizard Island
5250 BCE (?) Unknown Confirmed   Tephrochronology Wizard Island and Merriam Cone
5550 BCE (?) Unknown Confirmed 0 Tephrochronology Central Platform
5680 BCE ± 150 years Unknown Confirmed 7 Ice Core Mt. Mazama summit and flank vents
5900 BCE ± 50 years Unknown Confirmed 6 Radiocarbon (corrected) North flank (Llao Rock)
Deformation History

There is no Deformation History data available for Crater Lake.

Emission History

There is no Emissions History data available for Crater Lake.

Photo Gallery

This ridge rising above pastures of the Klamath River valley is the rim of Crater Lake caldera in the Cascade Range. Formation of the caldera about 7,700 years ago removed the top of what was then Mount Mazama. The southern caldera rim is located at the point above the two larger trees at the left side of the photo. Mount Scott, an older volcano located east of the caldera rim, forms the small distant peak to the far right.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1982 (Smithsonian Institution).
The rim of the Crater Lake caldera is seen in the distance from the summit of Mt. Thielsen to the north. The caldera formed about 7,700 years ago during a large explosive eruption that resulted in the collapse of ancestral Mount Mazama. Mount Scott forms the high point on the left skyline, and Timber Crater is the smaller cone below and left of the north caldera rim.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1982 (Smithsonian Institution).
The massive Llao Rock lava flow, exposed in the NW wall of Crater Lake caldera, was emplaced at the end of a major eruption about 200 years prior to the formation of the caldera. The thin, light-colored unit at the base of the lava flow, seen prominently on the right, is a Plinian pumice deposit from that major explosive eruption. The lava flow is more than 350 m thick and is overlain by tephra from the caldera-forming eruption of Crater Lake.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1981 (Smithsonian Institution).
The Wizard Island scoria cone has a symmetrical 90-m-wide crater at its summit, formed above the west floor of Oregon's Crater Lake caldera within a few hundred years of caldera formation. A lava flow created the peninsula in the foreground on the NW side of the cone, which forms a small island on the west side of Crater Lake.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1981 (Smithsonian Institution).
Devil's Backbone is a segmented dike that rises nearly 400 m from the shore of Crater Lake in the western rim of the caldera. The andesite dike was a feeder for a vent that was near Mount Hillman but has since been removed by glacial erosion.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1981 (Smithsonian Institution)
Erosion of the large pyroclastic flow deposit emplaced during the caldera-forming eruption of Crater Lake has exposed these pinnacles. The more resistant spires formed when the deposit was releasing hot gases after emplacement, forming fumarole pathways that cemented the grains together. The change in color of the deposit marks a change in the chemistry of the erupted rocks. The lighter-colored basal rhyodacite is overlain by gray (iron-and magnesium-rich) andesite.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1972 (Smithsonian Institution).
Wizard Island formed within a few hundred years of formation of Crater Lake caldera from a vent near the west caldera rim. This aerial view from the south shows the island, with a symmetrical cinder cone at its right side and lava flows forming small peninsulas on its flanks. Hillman Peak, in the center on the caldera rim, is the youngest of the pre-collapse Mount Mazama stratovolcanoes.

Copyrighted photo by Katia and Maurice Krafft, 1984.
The spectacular 8 x 10 km wide Crater Lake caldera was formed about 6850 years ago when Mount Mazama, a complex of overlapping shield volcanoes and stratovolcanoes, collapsed following a major explosive eruption. The eruption blanketed a huge area with ash falls and produced pyroclastic flows that swept all sides of the volcano. This wide-angle view is from the west caldera rim with the post-caldera cone of Wizard Island in the foreground.

Copyrighted photo by Katia and Maurice Krafft, 1989.
The 8 x 10 km wide Crater Lake caldera formed about 7,700 years ago during one of the world's largest Holocene eruptions. This eruption resulted in the collapse of ancestral Mount Mazama. This view from the east shows Mount Scott in the right foreground, one of the pre-caldera volcanoes. A post-caldera cone, Wizard Island, rises above the far lake surface.

Photo by Peter Lipman, 1981 (U.S. Geological Survey).
The 8 x 10 km wide Crater Lake caldera was formed about 7,700 years ago when Mount Mazama, a complex of overlapping stratovolcanoes, collapsed following a major explosive eruption. The eruption produced widespread ashfall and pyroclastic flows that traveled as far as 70 km. The caldera, seen here from the S rim, is 1,200 m deep and filled to half its depth by Crater Lake.

Photo by Dave Wieprecht, 1995 (U.S. Geological Survey).
Wizard Island is a scoria cone in Crater Lake caldera, which formed about 7,700 years ago. A lava flow from a vent on its NW flank forms the peninsula to the left. Llao Rock, a massive lava flow that forms the peak on the caldera rim, was erupted about 100-200 years prior to formation of Crater Lake caldera.

Photo by Dave Wieprecht, 1995 (U.S. Geological Survey).
The dramatic 8 x 10 km wide Crater Lake caldera is seen here in an aerial view from the east. The caldera was formed about 6850 years ago during a major eruption that caused the collapse of ancestral Mount Mazama, a complex of overlapping stratovolcanoes and shield volcanoes. Mount Scott, a pre-collapse stratovolcano, is the peak with small snowfields at the lower left. Wizard Island, a post-caldera cinder cone, can be seen near the far side of Crater Lake.

Copyrighted photo by Katia and Maurice Krafft, 1984.
The lake within Crater Lake is the deepest in the USA at nearly 600 m, within the caldera that formed during a major eruption of its predecessor Mount Mazama around 7,700 years ago. Snow mantles the summit of the Wizard Island cone in the foreground.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1997 (Smithsonian Institution).
The Wizard Island cone formed while the lake was still filling the Crater Lake caldera. The cone grew near the western structural margin of the caldera on top of a broader central platform of lava flows, and the visible portion represents about 2% of post-caldera eruptive products, the rest of which are below the lake surface.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1997 (Smithsonian Institution).
Phantom Ship is the eroded remnants of resistant dikes that now rise above the waters of Crater Lake. These dikes were feeders for lavas of Phantom Cone, the oldest of the known pre-collapse edifices forming Mount Mazama. Phantom Cone lavas have been dated to about 400,000 years before present and are exposed in the SE wall of the Crater Lake caldera.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1997 (Smithsonian Institution)
Hillman Peak, the westernmost andesitic stratovolcano of Mount Mazama, is partially dissected by Crater Lake caldera. The base of the cone consists of thin andesite lava flows; these are overlain by bedded fall deposits. The upper part of the cone, seen here, consists of andesitic lava flows erupted about 67,000 years ago. The snow-capped peak on the far horizon to the north is Mount Thielsen, a Pleistocene volcano.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1997 (Smithsonian Institution)
The snow-mantled peaks on the northern horizon are the remnants of Mount Mazama, seen here from the summit of Mt. McLoughlin. Mount Mazama was a complex of overlapping edifices that was once one of Oregon's largest volcanoes, until it collapsed about 7,700 years ago and formed the 8 x 10 km Crater Lake caldera. The highest peak to the right is Mount Scott, part of a pre-caldera edifice east of the caldera rim.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1998 (Smithsonian Institution)
Wizard Island is the only one of three post-caldera cones within the Crater Lake caldera. The symmetrical scoria cone has a 90-m-wide summit crater. It formed several hundred years after the collapse of Mount Mazama about 7,700 years ago along the western structural margin of the caldera. Much of the cone lies beneath the nearly-600-m-deep waters of Crater Lake. A small dome is located on a central platform below the water and east of Wizard Island.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1997 (Smithsonian Institution).
Volcanoes form some of Earth's most spectacular scenery and have been designated as national parks in many countries. The natural landscapes in these parks are a source of visual inspiration and varied recreational opportunities, and can also provide economic benefit to surrounding communities. Crater Lake National Park in the Oregon Cascade Range was established in 1902. This image looks across to Wizard Island and the western caldera rim from near the park visitor center and the Crater Lake Lodge.

Photo by Lee Siebert, 1997 (Smithsonian Institution)
GVP Map Holdings

The maps shown below have been scanned from the GVP map archives and include the volcano on this page. Clicking on the small images will load the full 300 dpi map. Very small-scale maps (such as world maps) are not included. The maps database originated over 30 years ago, but was only recently updated and connected to our main database. We welcome users to tell us if they see incorrect information or other problems with the maps; please use the Contact GVP link at the bottom of the page to send us email.


Title: Potential Hazards from Future Volc Eruptions in CA
Publisher: US Geological Survey
Country: United States
Year: 1989
Series: B
Map Type: Geology (Volcanic Hazard)
Scale: 1:500,000
Map of Potential Hazards from Future Volc Eruptions in CA

Title: Canada, United States
Publisher: DMA Aerospace Center
Country: United States
Year: 1988
Series: ONC
Map Type: Topographic
Scale: 1:1,000,000
Map of Canada, United States

Title: Faults & Geomorphic Maps of CA/ NV
Publisher: California Dept of Conservation, Division of Mines & Geology
Country: United States
Year: 1985
Series: CA Geol Data Maps
Map Type: Geology (Geomorphology)
Scale: 1:500,000
Map of Faults & Geomorphic Maps of CA/ NV

Title: W US /Map of Dist, Comp, Age-Late CZ Volc Centers
Publisher: US Geological Survey
Country: United States
Year: 1984
Series: MI
Map Type: Geology (Volcano)
Scale: 1:2,500,000
Map of W US /Map of Dist, Comp, Age-Late CZ Volc Centers

Title: Dist, Thickness, Mass of Tephra from Volcanoes
Publisher: US Geological Survey
Country: United States
Year: 1983
Series: MFS
Map Type: Geology (Volcanic Hazard)
Scale: 1:2,500,000
Map of Dist, Thickness, Mass of Tephra from Volcanoes

Title: Distribution, Comp, & Age of L Cen Volcan, Cascade Range, NW US
Publisher: US Geological Survey
Country: United States
Year: 1983
Series: MI
Map Type: Geology
Scale: 1:500,000
Map of Distribution, Comp, & Age of L Cen Volcan, Cascade Range, NW US

Title: Technical Map of the Geothermal Resources of CA
Publisher: California Dept of Conservation, Division of Mines & Geology
Country: United States
Year: 1983
Series: CA Geol Data Maps
Map Type: Unknown
Scale: 1:750,000
Map of Technical Map of the Geothermal Resources of CA

Title: Map SHowing Distribution, Composition, and Age of Late Cenozoic Volcanic Centers in Oregon and Washington
Publisher: US Geological Survey
Country: United States
Year: 1982
Series: Misc Investigations
Map Type: Geology
Scale: 1:1,000,000
Map of Map SHowing Distribution, Composition, and Age of Late Cenozoic Volcanic Centers in Oregon and Washington

Title: Geothermal Resources of CA
Publisher: California Dept of Conservation, Division of Mines & Geology
Country: United States
Year: 1980
Series: CA Geol Data Maps
Map Type: Unknown
Scale: 1:750,000
Map of Geothermal Resources of CA

Title: Geothermal Energy Resources of the Western United States
Publisher: ERDA and USGS
Country: United States
Year: 1977
Map Type: Cultural (Geothermal Resources)
Scale: 1:1,250,000
Map of Geothermal Energy Resources of the Western United States

Title: Klamath Falls
Publisher: US Geological Survey
Country: United States
Year: 1970
Series: V502
Map Type: Topographic
Scale: 1:250,000
Map of Klamath Falls

Title: Geol Map of OR W of 121st Meridian
Publisher: US Geological Survey
Country: United States
Year: 1961
Series: MI
Map Type: Geology
Scale: 1:500,000
Map of Geol Map of OR W of 121st Meridian

Title: Geologic Map of California
Publisher: CA Division of Mines and Geology
Country: United States
Year: 1944
Series: CA Geol Data Map Series
Map Type: Geology
Scale: 1:750,000
Map of Geologic Map of California
Smithsonian Sample Collections Database

The following 195 samples associated with this volcano can be found in the Smithsonian's NMNH Department of Mineral Sciences collections, and may be availble for research (contact the Rock and Ore Collections Manager). Catalog number links will open a window with more information.

Catalog Number Sample Description Lava Source Collection Date
NMNH 111123-1309 Hypersthene Andesite -- --
NMNH 111123-1310 Hypersthene Andesite -- --
NMNH 111123-1311 Hypersthene Andesite -- --
NMNH 111123-1312 Hypersthene Andesite -- --
NMNH 111123-1313 Hypersthene Andesite -- --
NMNH 111123-1314 Dacite -- --
NMNH 111123-1315 Hypersthene Dacite -- --
NMNH 111123-1316 Hypersthene Dacite -- --
NMNH 111123-1317 Hypersthene Dacite -- --
NMNH 111123-1318 Hypersthene Dacite -- --
NMNH 111123-1319 Hypersthene Dacite -- --
NMNH 111123-1320 Basalt -- --
NMNH 111123-1321 Basalt -- --
NMNH 112584-25 Andesite -- --
NMNH 112584-26 Pumiceous Tuff -- --
NMNH 112584-27 Pumice -- --
NMNH 112586-1 Welded Tuff -- --
NMNH 116387-70 Hornblendic Pumice -- --
NMNH 116387-70A Hornblendic Pumice -- --
NMNH 116387-70B Hornblendic Pumice -- --
NMNH 116387-71A Volcanic Sublimate -- --
NMNH 116387-71B Volcanic Sublimate -- --
NMNH 116387-71C Volcanic Sublimate -- --
NMNH 116387-72A Vaporphase Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-72B Vaporphase Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-72C Vaporphase Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-72D Vaporphase Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-72E Vaporphase Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-72F Vaporphase Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-72G Vaporphase Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-73 Vaporphase Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-74 Vaporphase Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-75 Vaporphase Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-76 Dacite Pumice -- --
NMNH 116387-77 Dacite Pumice -- --
NMNH 116387-78 Dacite Pumice -- --
NMNH 116387-79 Dacite Pumice -- --
NMNH 116387-80 Hornblendic Pumice -- --
NMNH 116387-81 Basaltic Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-82 Basaltic Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-83 Basaltic Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-84 Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-85 Dacitic Pumice -- --
NMNH 116387-86 Scoria -- --
NMNH 116387-89 Pumice -- --
NMNH 116387-90 Pumice -- --
NMNH 117465-100 Obsidian Cleetwood Flow --
NMNH 117465-101 Obsidian Cloudclap Flow --
NMNH 117465-102 Obsidian Llao Rock Flow --
NMNH 117465-103 Obsidian Llao Rock Flow --
NMNH 117465-104 Obsidian Grouse Hill --
NMNH 117551-129 Obsidian -- --
NMNH 75434 Unidentified -- --
NMNH 75434-1 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-100 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-101 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-103 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-104 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-105 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-106 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-107 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-108 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-109 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-110 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-111 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-112 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-115 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-116 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-117 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-118 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-119 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-120 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-121 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-122 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-123 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-124 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-125 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-126 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-127 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-128 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-129 Rhyolitic Tuff -- --
NMNH 75434-13 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-131 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-132 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-133 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-135 Sedimentary Rock -- --
NMNH 75434-136 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-137 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-138 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-139 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-140 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-141 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-142 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-144 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-145 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-147 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-148 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-149 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-150 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-152 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-153 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-154 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-155 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-156 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-157 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-159 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-160 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-161 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-162 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-163 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-164 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-165 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-166 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-167 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-168 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-169 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-17 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-170 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-171 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-172 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-174 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-175 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-177 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-178 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-179 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-180 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-181 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-182 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-183 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-184 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-185 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-186 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-187 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-188 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-19 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-190 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-191 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-192 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-193 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-194 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-195 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-196 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-197 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-198 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-199 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-2 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-200 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-201 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-202 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-203 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-204 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-205 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-206 Dacite -- --
NMNH 75434-207 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-209 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-210 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-211 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-22 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-23 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-3 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-34 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-35 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-36 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-37 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-4 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-45 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-47 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-48 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-5 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-52 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-53 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-54 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-56 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-57 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-64 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-69 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-71 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-81 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-82 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-83 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-84 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-85 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-86 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-87 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-88 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-89 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-90 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-91 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-92 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-93 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-95 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-96 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-97 Andesite -- --
NMNH 75434-98 Basalt -- --
NMNH 75434-99 Andesite -- --
External Sites