Crater Lake
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Names and Places of Crater Lake

ANDERSON SPRING - Named by Capt. O.C. Applegate in 1888, for Frank M. Anderson, with whom the Captain circled the rim-crests of the lake, on foot, the first to make this trip. They camped late in the afternoon, the first day near Mount Scott, Anderson discovering the spring.

ANNIE CREEK - So named in 1865 for Miss Annie Gaines, who, with Mrs. O.T. Brown, were the first white women to reach th water of Crater Lake. Miss Gaines reached the Lake first.

APPLEGATE PEAK - Elevation 7,115 [8,135] feet. . . . Name for Captain O.C. Applegate, of Klamath Falls.

BALD CRATER - Elevation 6,474 [6,478] feet. An extinct crater with no timber on it.

BUTTERFLY SLIDE - Discovered and named by Mrs. Sumpter de Leon Lowry, of Tampa, Florida, August 10, 1916, and so named for the reason that the reflection, added to the slide in front of Dutton Cliff, makes the form of an immense butterfly.

CABIN ROCKS - Named for their appearance on the face of Redcloud Cliff.

CASTLE CREEK - Originally Crack Creek, because of the depth of the canyon and steepness of the sides. Subsequently called Castle Creek because of the pinnacles, or spires, within the canyon.

CASTLE CREST - The first great rocky ridge-crest east of the lodge.

CHASKI BAY - A Klamath Indian name for one of their sub-gods. Named by Will G. Steel.

CLEETWOOD CANYON - The Cleetwood, the boat used to sound the lake, was launched down this canyon in 1886. Named by Will G. Steel.

CLEETWOOD COVE - A name dreamed by Will G. Steel, then given the boat for which the cove was named.

CLOUD CAP - Elevation 8070 feet. Above the lake, 1893 feet. Named by J.S. Diller because of its high dome.

COPELAND CREEK - Named for Hiram Copeland, of Fort Klamath.

CRATER LAKE - Was discovered by John W. Hillman and a party of prospectors, June 12, 1853, and named Deep Blue Lake. Discovered again Oct. 21, 1862, by Chauncey Nye, J.W. Sessions, H. Abbott, J. Brandlin and Jas. Leyman, and named Blue Lake. It was again discovered in July, 1865, by two hunters from Fort Klamath and named Lake Majesty, which was retained until a party from Jacksonville, in August, 1869, named it Crater Lake. Depth, according to U.S.G.S. records, 2,008 feet.

CRATER PEAK - Elevation 7265 feet. So named by U.S. Geological Survey, because of its small extinct crater.

DANGER BAY - So named because of falling lava rocks from walls above.

DEAD INDIAN ROAD - About 1854 a few settlers of the Rogue River Valley went to the mountain valleys now called Dead Indian. They found two or three deserted wigwams, in one of which were the bodies of two Indians, supposed to have belonged to the Rogue tribe. There was bad blood between the tribes of the locality, and this was accepted as mute evidence that hunting parties had met.

DESERT CONE - Elevation 6651 feet. So named because of the appearance of its surroundings.

DISCOVERY POINT - The place on the Rim where John W. Hillman discovered the Lake.

DEVIL'S BACKBONE - The great dike of lava rising sheer 1,300 feet from the water, and bisecting the lava formation of the rim.

DUTTON CLIFF - Elevation 8,150 feet. Above the water, 1973 feet. Named by Will G. Steel in August, 1886, for Capt. Clarence E. Dutton, then in charge of the surveying party.

DYAR ROCK - Named by Capt. Oliver C. Applegate in 1872, for Leroy S. Dyar, of Ontario, California, then Indian agent on the Klamath reservation and later a member of the Modoc Peace Commission. He was the only commissioner who escaped uninjured when attacked by Capt. Jack and other Modoc Indians, April 11, 1873, at which time General E.R.S. Canby and Dr. E. Thomas were killed and A.B. Meacham was wounded.

EAGLE COVE - The small bay where the trail down on the Lake terminates.

EAGLE CRAGS - Where eagles have nested. The great jagged heights, in general, along the crest of the Rim east of the Lodge.

GAY-WAS-E-USH, also LAND OF GAIWAYS - In the Klamath language, from Gi, to be or stay, Was--excavation, deep-dug place, and E-ush, lake. This is the Indian legendary name for the Lake, ruled over by the god Llao and his retinue of creatures. The name seems to have been applied to the Lake and the entire mountain surroundings. The play ground of Llao where he met the Klamaths in their legends, was on the shining pumice fields north and west of the Lake.

GARFIELD PEAK - Named by Will G. Steel for James R. Garfield, then Secretary of the Interior, July 15, 1907. Mr. Garfield was the first cabinet officer to see Crater Lake.

GODFREY GLEN - Named by Park Superintendent E.C. Solinsky in memory of William C. Godfrey, Chief Ranger, who in the discharge of his duties lost his life in a snow storm near the south entrance of the Park, Nov. 17, 1930.

GOODBYE BRIDGE - So named by U.S. Marshal Leslie M. Scott, July 22, 1913, because it was the last piece of work done in the park by W.F. Arant, the retiring superintendent. The creek was named for the bridge.

GOVERNMENT CAMP - The group of administration buildings at the head of Munson Valley.

GRAND DIVIDE GLACIER - A great glacier once spanned the Summit of the range at Victor Heights.

GRAYBACK RIDGE - A great fire scar on the southern slope of Dutton Ridge. So named for its appearance from Fort Klamath.

GROTTO COVE - Named for the caves found near the water's edge in the rim.

GROUSE HILL - Elevation 7401 feet. So named by the U.S. Geological Survey, because of the abundance of grouse there.

HILLMAN PEAK - First known as Maxwell Peak, for Sir [Lord?] William F. Maxwell, of Edinburgh, Scotland, who explored the Crater Lake region in early days. Then called Glacier Peak. Later named for John Wesley Hillman, who discovered Crater Lake, June 12, 1853.

KERR NOTCH - (Pronounced Car) - Named for Mark B. Kerr, chief engineer when Crater Lake was surveyed and sounded in 1886.

LADY OF THE WOODS - Was carved in the stone by Dr. Earl Bush. Answering an inquiry he stated: "The statue represents my offering to the forest, my interpretation of its stillness and repose, its beauty, fascination and unseen life. Deep love of this virgin wilderness fastened itself upon me and remains to this day."

LLAO BAY - The beautiful bay just south of Llao Rock.

LLAO HALLWAY - The narrow chasm near Castle Creek. So named because of its mysterious nether character, with reference to the Indian god Llao.

LLAO ROCK - Elevation 8046 feet. Above the Lake, 1869 feet. Named by Will G. Steel August 15, 1885, for the Indian deity, supposed to be the special guardian of the Lake, and identified in the descriptions given by Chief Allen David in telling the story of the conflict of Llao and Skell in their legends.

MAKLAS [Maklaks] PASS - From the Klamath, Maklas, signifying persons, people, and commonly applied to the Klamath tribe.

MAZAMA ROCK - One of the great rocks near Rugged Crest evidently fallen or blown from the upper walls of Mazama.

MOUNT MCLOUGHLIN - 9760 feet elevation. Named by Donald McKay in 1832, for Dr. John McLoughlin, the Father of Oregon, then factor of the Hudson's Bay Company at Fort Vancouver. So designated by resolution of the Oregon legislature in 1905, by the Oregon Geographic Board, and the U.S. Geographic Board. Same as Mount Jackson of 1846. At one time known locally as Snowy Butte.

MOUNT MAZAMA - On August 21, 1896, Miss Fay Fuller, then of Tacoma, Washington, christened the mountain at a meeting of the Mazamas, on the rim of the lake, naming it for the club.

MOUNT SCOTT - Klamath name Muckwulx, meaning a place where chiefs sleep. The mountain was named for Capt. Levi Scott, a member of the Oregon constitutional convention. He was with Jesse and Lindsay Applegate and twelve others on the initial exploration of southern Oregon in 1846. Elevation 8938 [8,926] feet. . . .

MOUNT THIELSEN - Elevation 9250 [9,173] feet. So named by John A. Hurlburt in 1872, for Hans Theilsen, of Portland.

MUNSON POINT - Named by Captain O.C. Applegate for Dr. Munson, physician at Klamath agency, who died on this point in 1872. He was accompanied by Sir [Lord] William F. Maxwell, of Edinburgh, Scotland, and a Mr. Bentley, of Toledo, Ohio.

MUNSON VALLEY - The valley west of Castle Crest where Government Camp is located, leading directly to Victor Heights.

MUSIC SHELL - The cave-like opening at the end of Llao Hallway, for the musical effect of the sound of the waters of Castle Creek.

PHANTOM SHIP - So named because of its resemblance to a ship, and its strange disappearance as it blends into the face of Dutton Cliff.

THE PINNACLES - Rising in the gorge of Sand Creek, column-like.

POLE BRIDGE CREEK - Named in 1865, when it was hastily bridged by soldiers with lodgepole pine poles.

RED CONE - Elevation 7372 feet. So named because of its color when seen at a distance.

ROCK OF AGES - Name suggested by Miss Jean Gladstone Steel, daughter of Will G. Steel, October 12, 1918. The great detached rock near the north rim referred to as Mazama Rock.

Rugged Crest - For the region of most recent flow of lava, where Diller's back-flow occurs, overlooking Cleetwood Cove.

SAND CREEK - It was so named because of its dangerous quicksand.

SINNOTT MEMORIAL - The memorial building located on Victor Rock, erected by the Government in memory of Congressman "Nick" Sinnott, long a representative for the congressional district embracing Eastern Oregon.

SKELL HEAD - Named by Will Steel, in 1908, for the Indian deity of the Klamath, and country east of the Lake.

SPARROW TRAIL - The trail down to the Lake on the inside of the Rim, named for Alex Sparrow, who was then Park Superintendent.

STEEL BAY - Named by J.S. Diller for Will G. Steel.

SUN NOTCH AND SUN MEADOW - The great glacier notch and the valley leading up to the notch, lying between Dutton Ridge and Vida[e] Ridge. Named because of its sunny position on the rim at the head of Sand Creek.

SKELL CHANNEL - The narrow waters separating Wizard Island from the western shore of the Lake.

TIMBER CRATER - Elevation 7360 [7,403] feet. Named by the U.S. Geological Survey, because it is an extinct crater with timbered sides.

THE WATCHMAN - When the lake was being sounded, a party of engineers was stationed on the summit to receive signals and record soundings. They were watching for the signals.

UNION PEAK - Elevation 7698 feet. Discovered by Chauncy [sic] Nye, H. Abbott, S. Smith, J. Brandlin, James Leyman and J.W. Sessions, October 21st, 1862, and so named because of their Union sentiments.

VICTOR ROCK - Named for Mrs. Francis Fuller Victor, the historian who visited the Lake in 1872, at the invitation of Captain O.C. Applegate. She viewed the Lake from this rock. The rock is now occupied by the Sinnott Memorial. Named by Captain Applegate.

VICTOR HEIGHTS - The elevation near Victor Rock occupied by buildings and campgrounds.

WHEELER CREEK - Named for James H. Wheeler of Fort Klamath.

WINE GLASS - So named by Professor J.S. Diller, who conducted the first geological examination of the Lake region, because of its appearance at a distance on the face of the wall-cliffs.

WITCHES CAULDRON - The crater of Wizard Mountain, named by Will G. Steel, August 17th, 1885.

WIZARD ISLAND - Rising 850 [763] feet above the surface of the Lake. It is the top of a mountain standing 2850 [2,763] feet above the bottom of the Lake. It was so named by Will G. Steel, August 17th, 1885, because of its weird appearance.

YELLOW CLIFFS - On the rim near the Palisades, named for their vivid coloring.

There remain many natural objects of interest and geological importance around the lake and in the Park unnamed. This list is taken from Steel Points, by Will G. Steel, and revised.

From: Lapham, Enchanted Lake, pp. 121-25.

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Last Updated: 14-Feb-2002