Nature Notes


Volume XXVII - 1996

Presented by
National Park Service
Crater Lake National Park
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Crater Lake Natural
History Association
NHA logo

By Stephen R. Mark, Editor

Rarely does a volume of Nature Notes have the opportunity to present stories as significant to resource management at Crater Lake and Oregon Caves as what are in the articles by Mark Buktenica and John Roth. The manned submersible, as described by Buktenica, received national attention in 1988 and 1989 when he and other scientists used it to collect samples from the bottom of Crater Lake. This eventually allowed investigators to show that much of the park is a model for small caldera evolution. Roth has likewise shown how fossil finds made last summer at Oregon Caves can be put into a larger geological context, thereby changing the way many people view the monument.

This year we also make special note of a floating log called the Old Man of the Lake. Since it was first documented in Crater Lake a century ago, the Old Man has often been a memorable part of boat tours and sightseeing around the rim. John Salinas pays homage to this wayward voyager, while other submissions provide the usual mix of observation, reminiscence, or insight about the lake and its surroundings.

Established in 1942, the Crater Lake Natural History Association's purpose is to aid the National Park Service in its educational and resource management programs at Crater Lake National Park and Oregon Caves National Monument. The association therefore sponsors this edition of Nature Notes from Crater Lake and encourages reprinting articles therein so long as credit is given to authors and CLNHA. Nature Notes are made possible through CLNHA operation of three sales outlets. Two of these are in Crater Lake National Park, with another at the Illinois Valley Visitor' Center in Cave Junction, Oregon. A list of items available for sale can be obtained by writing to CLNHA's Business Manager, P.O. Box 157, Crater Lake OR 97604, or by calling (541)594-2211 ext. 499.

Phantom Ship
Phantom Ship from Kerr Notch in 1936.
Homer Marion photo, NPS files.

Mount Mazama (Crater Lake)

These breathless tones are but a bier,
Within these cliffs are tears of blue,
The brilliance of each morning unfolds
A massive shroud of ethereal hue
Where once a feverish, fiery tongue
Lapped for the coolness of the stars
In agony, as flowing blood had wrought
A futile effort to heal the festered scars.
Now pinned to its breast a ghostly ship
Sailing forever on a windless sea,
No port shall ever lure to rest
Till God sees fit to set it free.
We come to drink of this beauty
Which was born in the throes of death
Centuries have found it unchanging,
The living has given its breath.

Ruth Neary, 1959

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