Explore the most popular views trails in Whiskeytown National Recreation Area with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

hiking
12 days ago

Wow. Super hard trail! 11 miles so I guess 5.5 miles of straight uphill nonstop! One foot in front of the other. Lots of beautiful views along the way and the peak has spectacular views and rock formations! You can do it!!!

hiking
12 days ago

Great trail with awesome views... very surprised with the negative review. The trail is very good with clay and rock base and very firm footing with awesome views of the lake. Far better than most... The only possible negative for me was the 1st 1/2 you're hearing the noise from I-5 but the positive is it's very close. The backside of the hike is across from probably the largest fresh water marina I've seen. The main dock was way over 1/4 mile long. Also surprising was how different the growth and type of trees from the north and south side of hike was. I did another trail just a couple of miles away called Waters Gulch. Didn't notice a fee box so hopefully a ticket won't follow me home...

Beautiful trail, pretty shaded. The fall is absolutely gorgeous, hiking to the falls is almost uphill the entire way but the trail is well maintained with resting benches if needed. Took my dog and she did great :)

hiking
14 days ago

We followed the signs instead of the app, which took us to the 4x4 access road that leads to the trailhead. Only the road had a tree across it so the gate was shut so we just parked and hiked up the road to the trailhead. Let me tell you, that road is long and steep. I imagine that’s probably what the Shasta Bally road is like, except longer. Once you get to the trailhead, the rest of the hike is pretty level to the falls. The falls are SPECTACULAR!
There’s another trailhead further down the road that skips the 4x4 road and that side of the trail and approaches the falls from another direction. Not sure how that trail is.

hiking
15 days ago

AMAZING falls at this time of year (April) in the rain. Not much of a “hike” which is a bummer. But if you take the path on the right it’s pretty fun climb down to the falls, very steep and dangerous, especially in the mud. Lots of poison oak tho. Easy switchback trail to the left.

hiking
19 days ago

First Off: Yes, this is a challenging trail. 5.6 miles and 4,500ft gain is no cake walk. I would recommend this hike to someone who is is in moderate shape.

While portions of the trail are fully exposed, (for example the last mile and the whole summit), there is intermittent tree coverage along the trail. It was nice to take a break in the shade of the trees when I stopped for a breather. The trail does get hot fairly quickly so carry lots of water- I had thee liters- though, there is one creek off the trail within the first mile for filtering. I would suggest hitting the trail early too and in late spring/early summer or fall to enjoy this trail during milder temperatures as Redding summers can get really hot!

The views are spectacular and worth every drop of sweat.

Trail Assessment:

The first 1.6 miles is the “easiest” part of the trail. There are plenty of flat portions to help you catch your breath as the inclines work up your heart rate. There are some deep ruts so watch your footing. At about 1 mile up you will see the turn off to the Shasta Trinity Divide Trail that takes you to Papoose Pass.

Miles 1.6 to 3.3 are, in my honest opinion, are the hardest parts of the trail. If you can make it up to mile 3.3 where there is a nice cozy bench and lookout, you can finish the trail. Why so hard? This portion has the steepest inclines and you will really notice when you go down. The flatter portions are few and far between and I found myself stopping more on these inclines than others farther up the trail. One consolation is that of the views! Around mile 1.6 you start to see open views of Whiskeytown Lake and the surrounding hills of Swasey Recreational Area, but wait! They get better!

From mile 3.3 to 4.6, I felt as the trail got easier. Though you are still gaining elevation quickly, the inclines are not as steep and the condition of the trail vastly improves. Where once was deep ruts gives way to a nice packed gravel dirt trail. I thought this section was quite pleasant and the views picked up substantially too! I saw many views of Mt. Shasta, the Trinity Alps, Shasta Lake and Mt. Lassen!

Miles 4.6-5.6....Oh boy! The last mile! Ha! One mile from the top the trail opens up beautifully and you see almost a 360 view! The radio tower is in sight and you could almost reach out and touch it.....but don’t be fooled! The last mile looks deceptively easy. Maybe it was due to my legs feeling like jello or the elevation, but I felt like I slogged up the last five switchbacks to the top! I was partially distracted by the amazing views too. Lol. Needless to say, the last mile is the final challenge of the hike.

Mile 5.6: the beautiful summit! The trail to the right is closed off due to the radio tower so just turn left and explore the fun area up top! I took solitude in a nice outcropping of rocks facing west and had a couple of trail snacks. I would say that Shasta Bally boasts the best views of Whiskeytown and the surrounding areas. I would do it again just to see them and get a killer workout. Don’t be deterred by the challenge, you’ll be glad you took on this amazing mountain!

I reached the summit in just over 2.5 hours and meandered my way down taking about 1:45 minutes to really take in the amazing views and snap some shots I missed on the way up. I was not disappointed.

Side Note: I hiked up Shasta Bally today 4-3-18. About 1.5 miles from the top I encountered snow and had to hike up half a mile in it till it cleared. I managed without snow gear but wish I would have brought an extra pair of socks! There was also snow on the summit too. :)

We were only there for an hour. And there was no way for anyone to keep track of the fees. So we ran onto the woods. Beautiful. Probably would be sketchy with kids or older people. There were a lot of lizards on the sunny side. And you’d prob want to watch for other possible reptiles. Great views of the lake. A great trail to stretch your legs on, if your on a long drive. We were traveling back to WA, from CA, and is was right off the freeway. Quick access on, and off. If you have charcoal and food, you could bbq at the pits that are available. Picnic tables and all.

off road driving
19 days ago

Mother Nature at its best.

off road driving
20 days ago

Amazing place

Awesome! We started at the trailhead by the sign. The first third of the trail was kinda blah, goes right next to a paved road on several sections. But once you hit the old mine (fenced off and apparently filled in) the scenery gets beautiful and you follow several different creeks and hit a few waterfalls (at least in March). The last third has you gaining elevation and skirting around some peaks, and winding back down to the parking lot. We ran into one other hiker and 2 mountain bikers during our couple hours there.

hiking
1 month ago

Great short day hike with amazing views and scenic waterfalls. Great for a swim as well.

hiking
1 month ago

Great trail! Went in mid-March and endured some rain and beautiful snowfall! This time of year there are a few creeks to cross carefully and a beautiful waterfall. The hike up can be a little grueling but you can do it! There is a big clearing at the peak, and even a nice bench under a tree. The hike down is fast and easy. The whole thing took us about 3 hours.

Glorious 3 hour round trip hike - 3 stream crossings, and some old settlements along the way too. Not too strenuous and a great payoff at the end. I’d defiantly do it again.

Very shaded and nice along the lake.

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked from Peltier Campground up the 4x4 road (since the gate is closed in the winter) to the Kanaka Peak Trail. Enjoyed sweeping views, a seasonal waterfall and a 360• view at the top! It was a beautiful, clear Sunday morning and I could see the Trinity Alps to the west, Lassen to the East and other mountains to the north and south with rolling hills! The shaded bench will be great in the summer seeing as the top is otherwise totally exposed. I took the Kanaka Cutoff Trail back down to Logging Camp and then back to the campground. Got a little turned around, but really enjoyed my hike! The creek crossings, top views and flora and fauna are so rich! Worth the effort and will do it again!

The trail is smooth and well maintained. It was chilly but protected from the wind. It was absolutely gorgeous and we’ll certainly do it again! BTW it’s pretty much all uphill on the way in. But we did the 1.5 miles in 33 minutes with plenty of stops for pictures :)

Great trail. Slow moving creek. Had the trail to myself.

Excellent trail, a few challenging hills, and great waterfall at the end. Well maintained. Took a 2-year-old in a stroller, there are a few spots where that becomes difficult, but nothing impossible.

This hike is in the national recreation area, so be sure to pay your entrance fee.

Drove my 2WD crossover up Berry Creek Road, which quickly became a one lane dirt/gravel road. It was a relatively easy drive. I ‘dropped a pin’ on Google Maps and guided myself to trailhead. There are a couple turns along the road. Once you get to the trailhead, you can’t drive any further. The trailhead has a single vault toilet and space for maybe 10 cars.

It’s a gradual climb throughout the hike. There’s a couple minor runoff crossings and a couple bridges. A wooden bench is located near a spot where you can see the lower falls. The waterfalls are in a small canyon and are beautiful. Metal railings and chiseled steps guide hikers around the otherwise sketchy sections. We made it to the last waterfall and turned back. We brought single hiking poles which helped descend some of the steeper sections towards the end of the waterfalls. Great hike & beautiful destination.

According to the sign at the trailhead, this trail is closer to 3.5 miles, but it’s worth it! We went on a Sunday morning and the trail was deserted. Well maintained, well marked, and beautiful the whole way

hiking
2 months ago

Great hike! Several offshoot trails along the way. Hiked a roundtrip of 10 miles-was fantastic with great views!

Be warned $6.00 day use fee.
Hike is not worth the money.
Poorly maintained monotonous trail that is narrow, so much so that many times your outside foot is perilously inches away from the steep banks down to the lake.
No shoring has been done to make the trail safe,.
You will be hiking under the Forest canopy with a photo worthy view opening up maybe 3 or 4 times.
We won’t be back when there are so many other safe and free trails with much more to offer.

Great hike, stunning falls!

This place is magical!

hiking
2 months ago

Nice little workout yesterday... had the trail to ourselves, beautiful weather, the streams were all pretty low/easy to cross, trail is in good shape/well-maintained with a couple of passable downed trees. The road to the trailhead is closed for winter so that’s an added mile or so of mostly uphill hiking, totaled about 8.25-8.5 miles round trip all said and done, did it in about 4 hours with a break at the top for lunch. Nice 360° views from the peak. Lots of ticks!! Probably stopped and pulled at least 20-30 out of my dog’s fur throughout our hike.

Be aware that Whiskeytown’s day use fee is now $20(!!), or you can buy a 1-year access that includes Lassen for $40.

hiking
2 months ago

Not much of a hiker but this trail was extremely fun and beautiful views from the top of Kanaka peak

2 months ago

Couldn’t get to the trail head when I tried two weeks ago. A large tree had fallen across the road about 3/4 of a mile past the end of the pavement. There was no warning because you can’t see it until you come around a turn so you’re stuck. Cliff on one side, mountain on the other. I had to back up on a narrow, twisting road quite a ways before finding a spot to turn around. Scary! I wouldn’t recommend this one unless you know that tree has been cleared. Mtn bikes can probably go under the tree but cars and horses can’t.

beautiful right now! green and gorgeous. Wasnt too difficult except for a couple uphill stretches. (I am not in the best shape right now haha) But it was relatively easy.

walking
3 months ago

Great hike around the lake. Shasta lake was about 50’ down. Still beautiful!

This was a very easy hike. No incline...I would consider it more of a walk but it has nice views of Shasta Lake the entire way.

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