This trail begins at the Pacific Crest Trailhead in the Drakesbad area of the park. It leads two and a quarter miles westward to a significant hydrothermal area. This area contains hot springs, mud pots and steam vents, along Hot Springs Creek. The activity of the area is more evident shortly after the spring thaw, but the scent of hydrogen sulfide is ever present.
Begin by walking south from the trailhead and crossing Hot Springs Creek. Two tenths of a mile from the stream crossing the trail forks. Follow the right fork to reach Devils Kitchen. The trail descends slightly from the PCT then leads through a marshy area created by numerous springs emptying into Hot Springs Creek. Within this wet area the trail crosses to the northern bank of Hot Springs Creek and follows the drainage westward.
Approximately one mile west of the PCT is a fork in the Devils Kitchen Trail. The left side of the fork leads across Hot Springs Creek to the Drake Lake Trail. Follow the right side of the fork to Devils Kitchen. From the Drake Lake Trail our route leads almost one mile to the beginning of the boardwalk through Devils Kitchen. During this mile the trail gains 250 feet in elevation.
Once the trail reaches Devils Kitchen in the midst of Hot Springs Creek it splits. This is the beginning and the end of the boardwalk that allows visitors to walk through the area. Interpretive signs along the boardwalk provide explanations of various features within Devils Kitchen.
Directions: From Chester, Drive westward on Chester Valley Road approximately five miles to Warner Valley Road (County Road 312). Turn right toward Drakesbad and Warner Valley and follow Warner Valley Road 12 miles to the Pacific Crest Trailhead. This road changes to dirt a few miles before reaching the trailhead. It is not recommended for RVs or trailers.
Elevation: 5,600 feet
Ending Elevation: 7,020 feet
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Lassen Volcanic National Park, California
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