An astronaut aboard the International Space Station shot this photograph of Crater Lake, in the Cascade Mountains of southwest Oregon. Snow still blankets most of the slopes surrounding the crater in late June, and clouds cast dark shadows on the lake surface. Wizard Island, a cinder cone volcano, is almost hidden by the clouds over the western part of the lake.
Crater Lake is the surface expression of a caldera that formed when Mount Mazama—a composite volcano whose peak once towered 3,600 meters (12,000 feet) above sea level—exploded and collapsed in a catastrophic eruption approximately 6,000 to 8,000 years ago. The lake now stands 1,883 meters (6,178 feet) above sea level.
View the full resolution image.