Lassen Volcanic National Park Road Opens This Weekend
Park Superintendent Darlene M. Koontz announced today that the main road through Lassen Volcanic National Park will open for through traffic this Saturday, July 16. “The park road crew and Caltrans have cleared snow along the 30 mile highway through the park, road turnouts, and trailhead parking areas. We are happy to have this primary access to Lassen National Park open for our summer visitors,” stated Ms. Koontz. “This year’s heavy snowfall seemed to come later this winter and spring, which extended the time it took to open the road.”
The popular Lassen Peak Trail is open the first 1.3 miles to the ‘Grandview’ location and only over snow travel on skis and snowshoes to the summit. This will be the last weekend for skiing and snowshoeing on Lassen Peak for this season. Trail crews will begin work to rehabilitate Lassen Peak Trail for the second season of the Reach the Peak project.
Many of the park trails still have snow coverage, including Bumpass Hell and Brokeoff Mountain trails. Hikers will find that travel in snow-covered areas requires sturdy hiking boots and trekking poles. Higher elevations in the mornings tend to be icy and may require an ice axe, crampons and helmet for safety. In the afternoons, snow-covered areas can become slushy and slippery which can make hiking difficult and hazardous. Kings Creek Falls trail is not accessible due to snow and the trail to Dream Lake is closed to the public due to the restoration project currently underway in that area. For those visitors wishing to avoid snowy areas, they will enjoy hiking along trails in the Manzanita Lake, Warner Valley and Butte Lake areas. One hike frequently overlooked is Cinder Cone volcano trail which begins along Fantastic Lava Beds and opens up with views of the Painted Dunes, Snag Lake and Lassen Peak.
All campgrounds in the park, except for the Summit Lake and Juniper Lake campgrounds, are now open. We anticipate that these remaining campgrounds will open in the next couple of weeks. The road to Juniper Lake is still snow covered and not passable by automobiles. The Kohm Yah-mah-nee Visitor Center and Loomis Museum are open daily and visitors will find concession-run facilities at the visitor center’s Lassen Café & Gifts, Manzanita Lake Camper Store & Cabins and Drakesbad Guest Ranch in full operation.
For more information, please contact the park at (530) 595-4480, from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. or visit the park website at www.nps.gov/lavo.
Did You Know?
The reddish color sometimes observed on top of snow at Lassen Volcanic NP snow is a living organism called snow algae. When snow begins to thaw, these microscopic organisms spring to life. They function as a primary food source and are being studied for their cancer-fighting properties.