The best time to backcountry camp or hike the trails at Crater Lake is mid-July through September. The backpacking season is short due to long, snowy winters. Lower elevation trails become snow-free in late June. Some higher-elevation trails typically remain covered by snow until mid-July. During the summer fire season, trail closures may occur and smoke from area wildfires can impact air quality and visibility.
Designated Backcountry Campsites
There are five designated backcountry campsites within the park. The sites are primitive in nature only flat area for tents. Sites are assigned with your backcountry permit on a first come, first served basis.
Dispersed camping is allowed with a permit under these conditions:
Areas Closed to Camping in Summer
To ensure the enjoyment of all visitors, protect fragile resources, and ensure visitor safety, some areas of the park are closed to camping. Check out our Camping Restriction Map for areas that are closed to camping.
Please note that there is no hiking trail that encircles Crater Lake in the summer.
During the summer months, fire danger can increase to high levels. Campfire are prohibited in the park's backcountry. Always use caution when using backpacking stoves and do so only by following current rules and regulations. Temporary fire restrictions or area closures may be in place during increased wildland fire activity. Check with the backcountry office for the most up to date fire restrictions and area closures.
Last updated: May 26, 2019