Friday, October 7, 2016

Crater Lake's Wizard Island named for its shape resembling a sorcerer's hat

Crater Lake with Wizard Island and Llao Rock
Wizard Island and Llao Rock (top right) named by William Steel, who initiated the national park idea of Crater Lake
Wherever standing on the rim surrounding Crater Lake, visitors marvel at the deep blue water and the green-gray island of the lake's west side: Wizard Island. This volcanic island appears cone-shaped whether you see it from the Sinnott_Lookout at Rim Village, a West Rim Drive spot or any other rim lookout. To get on to Wizard Island, you need to descend Cleetwood Cove Trail and get on a tour boat with an interpretive ranger. While approaching the cinder cone you may wonder how the island got its name.  

Crater Lake's early promoter William Gladstone Steel, who first visited Crater Lake in 1885, thought the cone looks like a sorcerer's hat [1]. He named the island Wizard Island and stuck to his witchcraft & sorcery approach by calling the crater on top of the island the Witches Cauldron [2,3]. 

Keywords: geography, geographic names, Wizard Island, Crater Lake National Park, Oregon.

References and more to explore
[1] William L. Sullivan: Trails of Crater Lake. Navillus Press, Eugene, Oregon, 2014. Note: see Hike 11.
[2] Crater Lake Institute: William Steel [].
[3]  Crater Lake Historic Resource Study: Names and Places of Crater Lake [].

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