August 13, 2009
Darlene M. Koontz, (530) 595-4444 ext. 5101
The first 1.3 mile of the 2.5 mile Lassen Peak Trail in Lassen Volcanic National Park is to open for the public on Friday, August 14. The popular trail has been closed since an accident that occurred on the afternoon of July 29. "The first 1.3 mile of Lassen Peak Trail to reopen will provide opportunities for visitors to experience hiking on this large volcano and affords many views of the surrounding landscape," stated the Superintendent. "The remaining portion of the trail will remain closed this season, and work to reopen the trail to the summit will begin during the spring of 2010."
The trail to the top of Lassen Peak is one of the most popular hikes in the park. It begins at the peak parking area at an elevation of 8500 feet and climbs steep and varying rocky slopes to an elevation of over 10,000 feet in just 2.5 miles. Much of the trail has little vegetation and is exposed to the changing weather conditions. This main feature of the park attracts approximately 25,000 to 30,000 hikers to its summit each season and all are encouraged to be prepared for these strenuous hiking conditions.
The National Park Service's third entrance fee free weekend of the summer is August 15-16. Lassen Volcanic National Park along with the other 390 national parks across the nation will offer free admission to all visitors. Lassen offers many opportunities to explore unique volcanic landscapes, enjoy a scenic drive with beautiful vistas, hike in pristine wilderness and discover a diversity of plants and wildlife that make the park their home.
As visitors hike along the 150+ miles of trails in the park, they are advised to wear sturdy hiking shoes or boots along with layered clothing to adjust to changing temperatures or precipitation. Carry water, food, first aid kit and a cell phone. It is also important to note that some of the trails are considered strenuous hikes with dramatic elevations and to hike at the speed and for the distance which is best for their own abilities.
For more information please contact the Kohm Yah-mah-nee Visitor Center at (530) 595-4480 daily from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., or visit the park website at www.nps.gov/lavo.