Here's the news release:
North Entrance Road Opens at Crater Lake National Park
The North Entrance Road in Crater Lake National Park is now open for travel. Superintendent Craig Ackerman announced that visitors can now drive to and from the park via this popular route and access spectacular views of the lake from West Rim Drive. This is an exceptionally early opening for Crater Lake’s North Entrance. Warm temperatures and a low snow pack have resulted in a greatly accelerated spring opening this year.
Some snow still remains on the ground at park headquarters – plenty for throwing snowballs! Snow depth is greater at many locations around the rim. All trails, including the Cleetwood Trail, are still closed and snow covered. However, it is possible to hike and bike on the parts of East Rim Drive that have been plowed, but are not yet open to traffic. National Park Service snow removal crews are now focusing their efforts on opening other parts of the park. More information will be issued when the entire Rim Drive is open for travel.
Crater Lake Lodge will open for the season on Friday, May 17th. The Rim Café and Gifts is open daily. For lodging reservations, please call (888)774-2728; for general concession information, please call (541)594-2255.
Steel Visitor Center in Munson Valley is open daily from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Ranger talks will be given daily at Crater Lake Lodge beginning Friday, May 17th. Our full complement of ranger-led programs, including boat tours and trolley tours, is scheduled to begin on Friday, June 28, 2013. For more information, call the Steel Visitor Center at (541)594-3100.
With several feet of snow still covering much of the park, visitors should be aware of potential hazards such as slippery snow patches and falling rocks. Please use caution when driving as icy and snowy roads can still occur this time of year, especially at night and in early morning hours. Steep snowfields still exist at many of the overlooks along Rim Drive, and visitors should use extreme caution to prevent falls. Because of the hazardous terrain that exists in the caldera surrounding Crater Lake, travel below the rim is prohibited at all times. Be safe and have an enjoyable visit!