Today we did the other half of the North Crater Trail around the area called Big Craters in the map below.
I’m glad we did the other half of the trail first. While it was very interesting, this half was much more dramatic, with the trail having us walking along the rim of some huge deep craters.
From the parking lot we could see people climbing up the Inferno Cone that we did the other day.
At the trailhead there are two very short walks to some mini volcanos called spatter cones.
They cut a slot in the side of the cone so that we can get in. It was a pretty small area so the panorama is distorted.
The photosphere does a better job.
The other one was more of a mound and not so standalone.
Next to it was a very colourful section of lava. I guess it was fenced off because people would walk on it.
The first part of the North Crater trail has you climbing up to the rim of the first of many large craters.
It was so large the panorama is very distorted. Once again the photosphere does a better job.
Around we go on the narrow rim.
A wider view.
Up and over to the second crater
Again the photosphere does it much better.
Jennie is up ahead looking down at the third massive crater.
Around we go.
Lots of tiny flowers to examine.
Another narrow rim and another crater.
And the photosphere.
The trail headed steeply down around another smaller crater.
Before we went down there was a short side trail to the narrow gap between the last and another hidden crater.
Standing on the rim looking at the one side.
And the other.
And the photosphere.
Eventually the path got to the spot where we had turned around coming from the other side and so we had lunch.
Heading back we went around the cinder cone that I thought the trail climbed the other day.
Back up we go to the big crater rims.
And back along the narrow rims.
To the first crater and then down to the car.
On the way home we drove around the other side of the Inferno Cone and it is covered in the small flowers.
Another in a long line of great days.
At dinner we experimentally determined that we had not used our flip top mustard container since home. It turns out that there is much more air pressure at 700 feet in elevation vs us now at almost 6000 feet, resulting in a mustard fountain.
Also the campground is almost full tonight with only a few of the smaller tent sites left. Annoyingly, two is the biggest sites, which must have been occupied early and are meant for big rigs, have a tiny A frame trailer and a small tent trailer.