Mount Shasta

Above the "red banks" where it's getting windy


Mount Shasta is one of California's most majestic mountains. It is a volcano which stands apart from any major mountain range. As such, it rises over the surrounding terrain and seems larger than its 14,162 feet.

I climbed Mt. Shasta in June 2006 with two friends by the most popular "avalanche gulch" route. Conditions were a bit unusual with 12 feet of snow at the trailhead at 6,900ft. The snowpack was about 200% of normal. We were hiking on snow and ice the entire time. It's a strenuous hike, but not too technical. Crampons and an ice axe are needed, but it's not necessary to rope up and there are no crevasses or extreme exposure. Snowshoes are helpful for the ascent to base camp in the afternoon when the snow is soft. Wind can be an issue, so having snow pickets to help in guying out your tent is a good idea before attempting the climb to the summit.


The trailhead at Bunny Flat and a view of the mountain          Looking up Avalanche Gulch from low camp

Start of the hike from the trailhead at 6,900ft                   Stopping for the first night after a short walk

Starting the climb with snowshoes to base camp              At the "helen lake" base camp with protective snow mounds

Climbing up from base camp at dawn                   Looking northwest from the summit

Three at the summit


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