For the last century or so Crater Lake in southern Oregon has been patrolled by a wooden sentinel in the form of a 30-foot hemlock tree stump that was first spotted back in the late 1800s that's been dubbed the Old Man of the Lake. Most of the stump's length is underwater and just two feet of length rise above the waterline. The Old Man of the Lake is buoyant enough to support a person's weight and is estimated to have lived at least 450 years before the day it came down and found its way into the lake.

The massive log was first written about in a report on Crater Lake geology in 1902, having been first been observed by report author Joseph S. Diller six years earlier in 1896. The log was studied and tracked over the years and was found to travel tens of miles per month, blown around by the winds that can buffet the lake.

Legend has it in 1988 the floating log was tied off as a navigational hazard by scientists doing work in the area but was quickly set free after the skies darkened dramatically after it was constrained. Whether or not it's true, it's good to know that the great log wanders the lake to this day.

Shea Gunther is a podcaster, writer, and entrepreneur living in Portland, Maine. He hosts the popular podcast "Marijuana Today Daily" and was a founder of Renewable Choice Energy, the country's leading provider of wind credits and Green Options. He plays a lot of ultimate frisbee and loves bad jokes.

Today I learned: The Old Man of the Lake, the 100+ year-old tree stump roaming Crater Lake
For at least the past century, Oregon's Crater Lake has been protected by a large floating tree stump known as the Old Man of the Lake.