About the Site
Crater Lake National Park (13)  


Park History

The Lake

The Boat

Wizard Island

The Phantom Ship

North Rim

East Rim

South Rim

West Rim

Llao Rock

Sun Notch

Mt. Scott

Park Mountains

Mt. Thielsen

Peripheral Views

Pumice Desert

The Pinnacles

Godfrey Glen

Crater Lake Lodge

Visitor Facilities


Rim Drive



Birds & Animals

Evening & Sunset


The Pinnacles

In addition to the lake and many volcanoes in the park there are many other traces of volcanic activity as well. One group of such traces are The Pinnacles, found in the southern part of the park lands near the confluence of Sand Creek and Wheeler Creek. A portion of The Pinnacles along the edge of the small canyon through which Wheeler Creek flows is shown below, looking north.

The Pinnacles appear as spires and needles of eroded rock. These unusual formations, some approximately 200 feet high, were formed when gas, which was escaping through vertical cracks in the surface cemented loose pumice into vertical tubes or pipes which were able to resist further erosion unlike the surrounding materials. The Pinnacles are, in essence, fossilized fumaroles.

The most spectacular views of The Pinnacles are available at The Pinnacles Overlook. This area is reached by a 6 mile branch road which leads southwest from the Kerr Notch Overlook on the Rim Road around the lake. The photograph below is of the Pinnacles from the Pinnacles Overlook, looking south.

The hollow formations known as the Pinnacles may reach heights of 200 feet. The pinnacles feature pumice of a buff color and scoria in shades of gray.

The canyon through which Wheeler Creek flows is quite scenic, with nearly vertical walls.

Another view of the Wheeler Creek canyon, with a number of the pinnacle formations, is shown below.

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  • All photographs ©Patrick Holleran, Shannon Digital Imaging, 1994-2013

  • Commercial use of the images contained in this document without express written consent is strictly prohibited.

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