Getting To Lassen Peak From San Francisco
I decided to attempt summiting Lassen Peak on August 11th, 2018. To get to Lassen Peak's trailhead from San Francisco, I decided to stay in Red Bluff and then wake up early the next day. I headed to Classic Inn, located in Red Bluff, during the afternoon of Friday, August 10th around 5:30PM. During the drive, I encountered bumper-to-bumper traffic and witnessed severe fires engulfing entire fields. The drive was slow and smokey, I went to sleep without dinner.
Summitting Lassen Peak
At about 5:30AM, I woke up in Red Bluff at the Classic Inn, went to Wal-Mart for camping food and headed to Lassen Peak's trail head. I started hiking on the trail at around 8:15AM, right before the Reach the Peak Hike-a-Thon started. I reached the summit around 10:15AM. Shortly after, hundreds, or even thousands, of Monarch Butterflies showed up. There was snow at the top, and many people, including families, along the way. I enjoyed the short but rewarding hike with commanding views over the smokey terrain.
The summit of Lassen Peak had refreshingly clean air. It was noticably better than the air at lower elevations. Lassen Peak is 10,463 feet high, it's about a 2,000 foot ascent from the parking lot. The wind speed was about 15MPH +/- during the hike but most of it was managable with merely a t-shirt.
Here you can see a 360 degree video from the summit of Lassen Peak plus butterflies.
Summiting Lassen Peak was a relatively easy but highly rewarding experience. The smokey air, strong winds and butterflies made the hike a truly unique experience. The views of Mt. Shasta were elevating. I had summitted Mt. Shasta in 2016 and seeing it stand out above the smoke was a reminder of the beauty to be seen in the state of California. I enjoyed the hike and the people on it along the way.
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