Height: 10, 457 feet (3,187 metres)
Type: Stratovolcano, volcanic dome
Number of eruptions in past 200 years: 1
Latest eruptions: 1914-1921
Last mountain in the the contiguous 48 states to erupt before the 1980 eruptions of Mt. St. Helens
This is a site to see, especially if you have never seen boiling mud and steam vents. The walkways bring you right down on top of the vents. This allows for some great photo ops, with unspoiled backgrounds. You smell the sulfur as you make the approach but quickly forget that its there as you get adjusted to it. We had went to Lassen in June, at that time there was still plenty of snow left on the grounds, some kids were even sliding.
Fondest memory: Playing in snow in June while wearing shorts and a t-shirt. This was my first summer in the west, coming from the east coast and I had never experienced anything like it before.
I would say my favorite thing about our visit to this park was that we were practically the only people there on July 22nd. This park is billed as one of the least visited National Parks in the United States and that is correct! It has wonderful views of the terminus of the Cascade Mountains. You can have a snowball fight on a hot July Day just a short hike from where you parked your car.
Fondest memory: This is truly a place to "get away from the maddening crowd"!
There were thousands upon thousands of huge pine cones that have recently fallen off the trees. I fact, I still found a few trees that hadn't lost them yet.
In this picture you can see last years pine cones as well.
Lassen Peak is one of many active and dormant volcanoes located around the rim of the Pacific Ocean in an area called the "Ring of Fire". Lassen Peak formed around 27,000 years ago as a volcanic vent on the northern side of a much older, much larger volcano called Brokeoff Volcano. The last eruption of Lassen Peak started in 1914 and caused sporadic eruptions for the next 3 years. The question is not if it will erupt again; but when.
There are many lakes inside the park, most of which are only accessible down dirt roads or by hiking trails. There are also several lakes that are accessible along the main road. To me, on of the prettiest was Lake Helen.
Another of the most interesting places in the park is called "Bumpass Hell" after explorer K. V. Bumpass. This area has a variety of geysers, fumaroles, mudpots and boiling springs. These are an indication that there is still plenty of heat below the surface waiting to erupt someday. Follow the warning signs and stay on the trails, Bumpass, who knew the area well, lost a leg stepping in the wrong place.
Entrance fee was $10 per vehicle when I was there.
Fondest memory: The Lassen Peak Trail was rough on me; but nice. I really enjoyed Bumpass Hell too.
Favorite thing: Not much chance to spot wildlife on the trail to the peak, but did spot this little ground squirrel at about 10,000 feet. Not sure what he was finding to eat at that elevation.
Favorite thing: I found this picture on a board at an overlook of Hat Creek just off highway 44, about 15 miles from the park entrance, if you were driving east toward Susanville.