Bumpass Hell Trail

Start: Bumpass Hell parking area
Round Trip Distance: 3 miles
Round Trip Time: 2 hours
Terrain: easy 300 foot descent
Elevation: 8000 feet


2019 Trail Closure

To ensure the safety of both staff and visitors, the Bumpass Hell Trail is closed for rehabilitation. Park trail crew will resume trail improvement efforts on the second half of the trail as soon as it is clear of snow. Trail crew anticipates completion one month after work begins. As with the normal summer trail opening of this high elevation trail, this date is largely dependent on winter snowpack and spring conditions. Due to heavy winter snowfall, the trail may not be accessible to begin work until well into August. Please note the following:

  • The Bumpass Hell Trail is closed at the Bumpass Hell and Lake Helen parking areas (see the closure map below).
  • The closure area includes slopes above and below the trail to help prevent injury to visitors or staff from rockfall.
  • It is unlawful to enter a closed area; violators may be ticketed.
  • The Bumpass Hell Basin and boardwalk can be accessed via the 5.2-mile round-trip, Cold Boiling Lake Trail. Learn more here.
Map of closure area (shown in opaque red fill) for the Bumpass Hell Trail and basin
Map of Bumpass Hell Trail and Basin closure area depicted in an opaque red fill.

Alternatives to Visiting Bumpass Hell

There are numerous opportunities to view hydrothermal features in the park during the Bumpass Hell Trail and Basin closure. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Visit Sulphur Works hydrothermal area. The sidewalk provides views of boiling mudpots, steam vents, and steaming ground. You can also hike a short distance up the Ridge Lakes Trail, from the Sulphur Works parking area, for an alternative view.
  • View contemporary and/or historic images of the Bumpass Hell hydrothermal area or view the video below.
  • Hike Boiling Springs Lake or Devils Kitchen Trails in the Warner Valley area (accessed via Chester) to these equally impressive hydrothermal areas. Expect an increase in parking demand and trail use this summer.
  • Access the Bumpass Hell Basin and boardwalk via a 5.2-mile round-trip trail from Kings Creek Picnic Area via Cold Boiling Lake. Parking will be extremely limited. View photos and learn more here.
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Learn more about the trail into Lassen's largest and most popular hydrothermal area, Bumpass Hell.


Seasonal Trail Opening Information

The trail to reach Bumpass Hell is at a high elevation and recieves significant snowpack. Every spring, the trail will close due to severe winter hazards. On average, it opens by Fourth of July weekend each summer, however actual opening dates vary with each year's snow pack. For more information about Bumpass Hell trail status and conditions, please contact the visitor center (530) 595-4480.

Previous trail opening dates: July 13, 2011 | June 29, 2012 | June 25, 2013 | June 11, 2014 | June 7, 2015 | July 9, 2016 | August 22, 2017 | Trail Closed in 2018


The Largest Hydrothermal Area in the Park

Bumpass Hell is the largest hydrothermal area in the park and marks the principal area of upflow of steam and discharge from the Lassen hydrothermal system. The temperature of high-velocity steam jetting from Big Boiler, the largest fumarole in the park, has been measured as high as 322°F (161°C), making it one of the hottest fumaroles in the world. The steam heated waters are typically acidic and are not safe, even for bathing. Learn more about hydrothermal features in Lassen in a U.S. Geological Survey publication, "Hot Water" in Lassen Volcanic National Park.

Last updated: April 30, 2019

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 100
Mineral, CA 96063


(530) 595-4480

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