Lava Butte is a cinder cone located in central Oregon, USA, just west of US Highway 97 between the towns of Bend, Oregon, and Sunriver, Oregon. About 500 feet (150 m) tall, it is part of a system of small cinder cones on the northwest flank of Newberry Volcano, a massive shield volcano which rises to the southeast. The cinder cone is capped by a crater which extends about 60 feet (20 m) deep beneath its south rim, and 160 feet (50 m) deep from the 5,016 ft (1,529 m) summit on its north side. Lava Butte is part of the Newberry National Volcanic Monument.
A United States Forest Service fire lookout tower was built on the summit in 1931, and in early 1933 a steep, single-lane road was constructed spiraling up to the summit. In February of that year, the local Skyliners ski club proposed a ski jump on Lava Butte, but it was never built. In June 1946, widening of the road up Lava Butte to two lanes was completed, along with constructing two small parking lots at the summit. The road was later paved in July 1950. The original lookout was replaced with a larger one in 1957, which was subsequently enlarged in 1962 to accommodate a small visitor center and museum on the first floor. In 1998, this was replaced with a new lookout built in the original L-4 style of 1931.
In July 1966, twenty-two astronauts trained in Central Oregon for the upcoming Moon landings, at sites including Lava Butte, Lava River Cave, and Newberry Crater. In May 1967, the U.S. Forest Service created the 8,983 acre Lava Butte Geological Area to protect the cinder cone, with plans for recreational and interpretive development. Construction of the Lava Lands Visitor Center located just south of the cone began in April 1969, and it was finally dedicated in September 1975. In November 1990, Newberry National Volcanic Monument was created, encompassing Newberry Crater, Lava Cast Forest Geological Area, Lava River Cave, and the Lava Butte Geological Area.
|Best months for climbing:||Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov, Dec|
|Most recent eruption:||About 7,000 years ago.|
|Nearest major airport:||Eugene Airport|
|Convenient Center:||Bend, Oregon|
Thanks to Kelly Canaday for adding this peak.
NOTE: Trip reports were previously called "Summit Logs" - same feature, new name
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