This short, easy trail will be interesting for history buffs, photographers and sightseers alike. The trail consists of two loops, an inner and outer, that lead through the lava formations used as a fortress by the Modoc in 1873. Fifty-two Native American families sought refuge in these formations for nearly five months as the U.S. Army besieged the lava beds in order to force them back to a reservation.
All of the Modocs' spiritual, familial and daily activities were carried out in and around this area. As you walk along the paths you'll notice a medicine circle used by the Modocs. Please respect this area as a traditional place of worship and walk quietly through it. You'll also notice offerings on a prayer tree at the junction of the inner and outer circle. These were placed by individuals moved by the intrinsic emotion of the stronghold.
Directions: From Lava Beds Visitor Center, Follow Hill Road northward to Gillems Camp then turn eastward approximately 2.5 miles to the trailhead.
Elevation: 4,000 feet
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Lava Beds National Monument, California
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