Tackle the highest peak in Lassen Volcanic National Park and stand atop an active volcano. Located four hours north east of San Francisco this Northern California park might be a little out of the way, but it's a prime destination for seekers of tranquility and those with even just a passing interest in geology. Mount Lassen is a towering testament to the volcanic origins of this region, and an imposing sight from the trailhead on the shores of Lake Helen. Starting at the parking lot in Lassen National Park, this popular trail makes a steep climb to the summit of Lassen Peak. The hike can be difficult, but the views are well worth the effort. It is truly a worth-while adventure to the top of an active volcano. On the main road through Lassen National Park, a parking lot at the trailhead marks the beginning of the journey. The trail starts at 8500 feet in elevation, and ascend quickly. The high altitude in combination with the steep ascent can make this hike difficult, but the trail is relatively short, a mere 2.5 miles in each direction. There no trees to shade the hike, so be prepared for direct sunlight the entire trip. The trail remains a popular destination, because of its spectacular views, and the bragging rights of climbing this active volcano.