Going to The Lava Beds National Monument was an unplanned detour for us and one we were happy to have made the time for. After spending the night in Klamath Falls, OR we were gassing up at the local Albertsons gas station when the friendly attendant suggested we check out Lava Beds on our way to Lake Tahoe.
Since there was no hurry for us to get to Tahoe, we decided to take his word for it and headed for the Lava Beds on the way. What a GREAT stop it was.
- Energetic, helpful rangers
- Short distance from Klamath Falls, OR
- Relatively close to Crater Lake National Park
- Unusual terrain
- The kids loved it!
- Great visitors center with Native American, US History, and Geological RoadSchooling opportunities
- Caves for different ages and ability
- Junior Ranger Program
- Easy hiking paths
- Great for bicycling on the park roads
Tips for Visiting The Lava Beds National Monument with kids:
- If you plan on doing some serious exploring in the caves bring you own helmets so you don’t have to purchase them there
- Make sure to borrow flashlights at the Visitors Center
- Pack a lunch so you can stay for the day- there is so much to do!
- The caves are chilly so bring long sleeves for layering- even in the summer
- Ask about the Junior Ranger Program at the front desk. Its basically Road Schooling curriculum handed to you for FREE. The kids will be excited about learning when they know they are earning a certificate and badge!
Next time we are in the area, we will definitely make sure to give ourselves plenty of time to explore the different caves at Lava Beds National Monument. We really just scratched the surface in our short time there. I think the time was appropriate for the ages of our kids but as they get older it would be nice to give ourselves more time to explore below the surface of the earth!