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Grizzly Mountain (Best View in Siskiyou County outside of Mt. Shasta Peak)

grizpeak GRIZZLY PEAK: WHAT YOU’LL SEE:

  • Unobstructed close-up view of Mount Shasta, Trinity Alps, Castle Crags, Black Butte (a small cinder cone mountain adjacent to Mount Shasta near the town), Town of McCloud, Pit River Basin, Hatchet Ridge (with many windmills on it), Redding, Shasta Bali, & many other notable features. Also, you drive right passed the aqua colored glacial waters of McCloud Reservoir (good fishing).
  • You only get a good view if you can see Mt. Shasta from a fair distance away. If it’s socked in with clouds, you might want to choose another day for this adventure.

THINGS TO KNOW:

  • 2 ways to get to the top, Hiking part of the Pacific Crest Trail or Driving 200-300ft shy of the peak.
    • Driving: Best to go in a truck or SUV with moderate clearance as the roads have a few dips/bumps that a car may not cross over. 4×4 highly recommended at least for the last section of road.
    • Hiking Path: Centipede Gulch Trailhead. Proceed to GPS location 41.117325, -122.058472.

DIRECTIONS:

  • GPS Directions: It’s a little more complicated than typing in the final GPS coordinates. If you simply place in the final GPS coordinates, it’ll route you the wrong direction through private property and a locked no-trespassing gate. Not recommended. To get there, you must have a mapping software that allows multiple destinations & then input 2 sets of GPS coordinates to get yourself there. The first set is to the Centipede Gulch Trail for the start of the hiking option: 41.117325, -122.058472. If driving, then type in the coordinates to the final destination 41.144599, -121.979142.  The apple mapping app doesn’t do multiple destinations very well.
  • Driving Directions from Mount Shasta, CA
    • Visual Directions:

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    • From Mount Shasta,Travel south approximately 12 miles on Highway 89.
    • If you need or would like a map, proceed to the Forest Ranger Office in McCloud (2019 Forest Road McCloud, CA 96057 or GPS Coordinates )
    • In the town of McCloud, make a right turn on Squaw Valley Road (it’s the one with the Chevron Gas Station, can’t miss it). Travel down Squaw Valley Road, staying on the main road as it travels down to and around McCloud Lake.
    • As you cross over the McCloud Lake Dam, make a right turn. The road becomes dirt & very bumpy. Watch out for rocks. Approximately 1 mile down the road, there is a big parking lot with a trailhead at the backside of it. For the hiking option, this is where you start the trail. If driving, continue on the road a few miles (6 miles or so).
    • You will come to a fork in the road with a sign saying Grizzly Peak Road. Take a left turn and travel approximately another 6 miles to the peak. Look out for rocks, bumps in the road, and deep puddles you can get stuck in. After a big storm, there is a possibility of trees falling across the road. If you can’t move the log, rock, etc out of the road safely, you can hike up the main road towards the peak. keep hiking upwards and you will get up there. It’s gorgeous. When you’re up there you may have cell service. Grab a selfie & then reverse your GPS course (before you loose all cell coverage).
    • Let me know how your trip went (kellysmith@ieee.org)
    • Maps: Note that there is limited cell coverage in the area. Verizon works intermittently.
    • The closest Gas Station is in McCloud.

Bear Mountain Lookout

IMG_6207 So you like the postcard/greeting card, do ya’? Let’s get your prepped for an adventure to the Bear Mountain Lookout. WHAT YOU’LL SEE:

  • Mount Shasta, Castle Crags, Fall River/MacArthur California (Big Lake) Adjumawi State Park, Mount Lassen, Soldier Peak, the mountains surrounding Medicine Lake, & a really cool fire lookout tower at the top. An unhindered view from the top of a mountain.

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THINGS TO KNOW:

  • I was safely able to take a Subaru outback up the mountain. I do not recommend low to the ground cars. You need a small amount of clearance and to drive carefully.
  • There is a yellow gate that blocks the road up to the lookout tower. It’s a 1 mile hike up a dirt road to the top (gradual incline & actually a nice hike). That gate may be unlocked during the day in the summer. Check with the McCloud Ranger District on the details. If you park at the gate, be sure to pull off to the side of the road or back at the last curve in the road (plenty of parking space there) so a ranger can drive passed you.

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  • Best Photos are in the morning right as or just after the sun has risen.
  • Winter & Early Spring may have some snowy conditions or a tree across the roads. Not recommended unless you’re well prepared, or instead just want to hike it. I recommend calling the McCloud Ranger District (530.964.2184) during regular business hours to check conditions on whether the roads are accessible to the lookout. Deciding whether to go or not? If you have an awesome 4×4, a shovel, unbreakable spirit, a chainsaw/machete/ax, & a second 4×4 to pull you out, go for it! Or if you’d rather just take a set of snowshoes or long hike.
  • Maps:
  • The closest Gas Station is the Chevron in McCloud, CA.
  • Note that there is limited cell coverage in the area. Verizon works intermittently. The closest payphone is at Bartle.

DIRECTIONS: (EASY) Easiest way to get here is via a smartphone with GPS:  Go to your mapping app, type in 41.301640, -121.719074 and navigate to this point from your nearest location. (MODERATE) Starting in Mount Shasta City, California. Travel approximately 12 Miles South on Highway 89 towards the town of McCloud. You will drive through the town of McCloud, continue a good distance (approximately 16 miles) and you will pass a small 2-3 building town called the Bartle Lodge (remember that if you get hungry). Just beyond Bartle (200 yards or so), take an immediate left on the Harris Spring Road (follow sign toward Medicine Lake). Travel 4.1 Miles and make a right on a road following the signs towards Medicine Lake. Drive a very short distance (1/4 mile) and make a right, following the sign that points to Bear Mountain Lookout. Shortly after that, the road forks. Follow the fork to the left called forest service road 40N08 (you’ll see a brown vertical post with this designation on it). Continue driving down this road (as the main road from here on out is the bear mountain lookout road). The road will eventually start going uphill. Follow this. Drive slow and watch out for rocks/branches/trees fallen in the road. IMG_6217 There is an unmarked road (hard right uphill) that goes up to the fire lookout. As the main road continued to go up, if the road starts going back down, you’ve accidentally gone too far. Turn around and find the bear mountain lookout road. HUNGRY? Remember that tiny building & the town of Bartle (2-3 buildings & a payphone). 16732 California 89, McCloud, CA 96057. or GPS:41.256837, -121.834561 . Well, if you’re there and they are serving food, they have a legendary potato pancake (if Linda is still working there). It looks a lot like a pancake, but with delicious ingredients inside (potato + other trade-secret ingredients she will not unveil). I kid you not, the last time I stopped in there, the guy next to me ate it and said he would get in trouble with his wife for not bringing her with  him. A few minutes later, a guy walks in with his grandson, sits and tells the kid he’s going to have the potato pancake. I rest my case.. 🙂

Visual Directions: