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Plenty of outdoor events

Delaine Fragnoli
Managing Editor
7/27/2011

The Yahi Group of the Sierra Club, out of Chico, plans a backpack outing Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 27 – 28, to Horseshoe Lake in Lassen Volcanic National Park. The trip begins at the north end of Juniper Lake and travels west for a mile or two with a 700-foot elevation gain and loss, then levels out with some easy cross-country travel. The group will set camp at Horseshoe Lake, where great swimming is an option.

Saturday afternoon plans call for a walk to some interesting water features, floating bogs and unique springs. A more challenging 4-mile round trip hike to Indian Lakes is planned Sunday morning. The group will break camp a little after lunch and return to the trailhead. Those who want to hike some more can climb to Crystal Lake on the way out.

Bring backpacking gear, food and water (a group water filter will be available once at camp), $10 entrance fee or pass per car, and swimsuit. The trip leader has some equipment to loan. You must call leader John at 872-8258 in advance for a reservation. The National Park Service limits groups to 10 people.

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The Sierra Institute has a new tour that will appeal to outdoor enthusiasts.

“Girls Night Out in Humbug Valley” is set for Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 27 – 28. The tour starts at 12:30 p.m. Saturday at the Almanor Ranger District in Chester. Participants will carpool to Yellow Creek Campground, where they’ll spend the night. Transportation will be provided after that. Bring your own camping gear — food will be supplied.

Humbug Valley has been a special place for the Maidu for hundreds of years. Beverly Ogle, Maidu/Yahi Yani historian and author, will share history and stories of the area. The tour visits Big Springs, where the Maidu used to worship, and Soda Springs to taste the soda water and to see the new Tasmam-Koyam monument honoring the Maidu.

The group will also visit the Pioneer Cemetery, cowboy line shack and remnants of an old hotel.

After touring Humbug Valley, the group returns to Yellow Creek campground to set up camp, make a campfire dinner, and spend the evening gazing at stars and telling stories.

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The Mt. Lassen Chapter of the California Native Plant Society has scheduled several trips in our area. Alternate meeting sites can be arranged to accommodate those living in Plumas. All trips open to the public.

The group will hike from Drakesbad to Devil’s Kitchen in Lassen Volcanic National Park on Saturday, Aug. 6. The 4.2-mile, round-trip trail to Devil’s Kitchen is gentle, wide and smooth. It begins near the Drakesbad Guest Ranch at 5,680 feet and passes through an area of small warm springs. The first half is across flower-filled meadows, before the trail enters a forested area.

Devil’s Kitchen is a thermal area of belching fumaroles, boiling mud pots and steaming rock outcrops in a dazzling array of fiery colors, the whole area transected by a fast-flowing stream fed by snowmelt.

I’ve hiked this trail and it is a great microcosm of everything you can see at Lassen in one bite-sized piece. Frankly, I think it holds its own with Yellowstone — and without the crowds!

The group returns to Lassen Sunday, Aug. 21, this time to Lake Eiler in the Thousand Lakes Wilderness.

Beginning at the Tamarack trailhead (13 miles from Old Station), the group will follow the trail as it wanders through the lodgepole forest for 2 miles to Lake Eiler. On the return, the group plans to loop past Barrett Lake and numerous ponds replete with yellow pond lilies.

For either trip, bring lunch, water, sturdy shoes and sun/insect protection. Call leaders Wes (342-2293) or Gerry (893-5123) for an alternate meeting site.

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Bike the Bizz trail shuttles will run Aug. 6 and 20. Lassen Land and Trails Trust offers Bizz Johnson Trail shuttles the first and third Saturdays of each month through October.

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) provides a truck and trailer to shuttle bikes from Susanville to starting points along the trail. Lassen Rural Bus transports hikers and bike riders as part of its regularly scheduled service between Susanville and Westwood. The shuttles allow people to arrange one-way — and mostly downhill — trips on the trail without having to plan their own vehicle shuttles.

Shuttles depart from the Susanville Railroad Depot on Richmond Road at 8:30 a.m., making stops at Devil’s Corral (7-mile return ride), Fredonyer Summit (12 miles) and Mason Station (18 miles) en route to the final stop at the Westwood trailhead (30 miles). Separate bike shuttle fees and bus fares vary according to stop.

Participants should be at the Susanville Depot a half-hour before departure to allow time for bicycle loading.

To reserve space, visit the Lassen Land and Trails Trust website, llttweb.org, and click on the event registration link. More information is available by calling 257-3252.

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The land trust continues its Discover Lassen series Saturday, Aug. 13, with “Grebes at Eagle Lake,” from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

David Arsenault, president of the Plumas Audubon Society, will lead the outing as the group explores one of the primary breeding areas for both western and Clark’s grebes, “High Concern” species in the Great Basin and Sierra Nevada regions and the focus of an Audubon monitoring program.

Visit llttweb.org for more information or to register.

 

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