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This trail climbs 2,000 feet in two and a half miles ending on the 10,457-foot summit of Lassen Peak.

The trail to the summit of Lassen Peak is steep, but short, only five miles round trip. During this five miles the trail ascends nearly 2,000 feet. Along the route interpretive signs provide information about the geological and natural history of the peak and region. Lassen Peak last erupted in 1917 and evidence of volcanic and glacial activity are evident along the path.

Begin this trail at the parking area along Highway 89, which is seven miles north of the southwestern entrance of the park. Walk north from the parking area along an ascending trail. The steepness of the route is mild at first. After walking approximately two tenths of a mile on a treeless slope the trail turns sharply southward. It gains 70 feet before turning northward again in a forested area. The trail continues to climb moderately passing through an open area. It begins to switchback in earnest at 8,800 feet.

After three sets of switchbacks, that shorten as they climb, the trail climbs steadily for a short distance. It reaches a series of short switchbacks at mile one. The grade through this portion of trail is very steep. At the top of these switchbacks the trail leads northeast around a volcanic formation. It then turns westward to begin a series of longer switchbacks. The trail climbs the southern ridge of Lassen Peak leaving switchbacks behind at 10,320 feet.

Upon reaching the summit ridge the trail leads northeastward to the high point of the peak. In the two tenths of a mile that leads to the summit the trail crosses a permanent snowfield that leads along the southern flanks of the peak. Beyond this the route forks with the right side leading to the high point on the ridge. The trail to the left crosses the lava field the fills the center of Lassen Peak summit to the northern rim of the volcanic crater.

Due to the high elevation of this summit hikers need to prepare for changing weather conditions. Extreme conditions on Lassen Peak may warrant a jacket, hat and gloves. Sunscreen and water are important supplies for anyone attempting to summit Lassen Peak.

Directions: From Northwest Entrance, Drive southward on Highway 89 23 miles to the trailhead for Lassen Peak.

Elevation: 8,500 feet

Ending Elevation: 10,457 feet

Usage: Heavy

Difficulty: Strenuous

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Lassen Volcanic National Park, California

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The details, dates, and prices mentioned here were accurate at the time of publication.

Review by Wildernet Copyright © 2010 all rights reserved.