The Shasta National Forest is a federally designated forest in northern California, USA. It is the largest National Forest in California and is managed by the U.S. Forest Service.
Hiked while it was snowing & a heavy mist around the falls. It left me with my mouth gaping open & then I could hear myself "WOW - OH MY GOD -WOW" Another hiker was there (I did see small shoe prints in the snow while hiking beside the RR track). Denise, from Lubbock, was just as awestruck.
Great Trail. Slightly Challenging. If your not used to the altitude it will be even more of a challenge. Trail not marked and it can be easy to stray. Just stay on the rocky path and follow other hikers. Once you reach Heart Lake, you can continue west up on the ridge to get an AMAZING view of Mt Shasta and the surrounding area. Stay positive.
We have done this loop counterclockwise, and didn't regret it one bit as it has allowed us to completely avoid the crowds even though it was a long weekend.
A word of caution: even though this trail description says the loop is 14.2 miles, in reality it's closer to 17-18.
On the first day we walked 7.5 miles to Bear Basin and camped on an established camping site. The closest human soul was an entire 1 mile away, and we got an amazing experience of being alone in the wilderness.
On the second day it took us another 5 miles to reach the Seven Up Pass. The Seven Up Pass was the most beautiful part of the hike. Wherever you are hiking from, make sure you traverse it! We were originally thinking to connect to the Four Lakes Loop from there, however, that trail involved going down into the Black Deer Valley and coming up on the other side just as much as we have just done out of the Bear Valley, and we didn't feel up to it.
So we had an amazing lunch in an incredible tucked in spot at Seven up Pass and headed down to the Granite Lake. Granite Lake was a zoo - we counted 10 tents visible just from the trail! It really felt like there needed to be an established bathroom there at this point, it was so overcrowded. So we headed down to the car. The second day for us was 11 miles, which is a bit of a stretch with backpacks.
More photos and description can be found here:
Nicole E. on Black Butte
Amazing 360 views!
Nicole E. on Lake Siskiyou Trail
Awesome easy hike around lake sis. Had to get off the trail quite a bit to stay near the water, so it ended up being almost 8 miles for us.
Not so sure this Trail had much to offer. You can get most of these views without any effort on multiple other trails around here. Maybe it's better earlier in the season when it's cooler and there's snow on the ground, but in mid-august it sucked.
Train your face off! I once climbed via Avalanche Gulch using crampons and axe. This was far preferable over my second trip in the late Summer, climbing via Clear Creek. We never hit snow, so the crampons and axe were just extra weight in my pack. The loose skree/sand/gravel made for the ol' one step up-half step back climb. It was kinda miserable.