Among dozens of places in California where one could spend a weekend, Mount Shasta became my favorite. Especially entertaining this place is during the winter season. Higher elevations tend to get some snow cover during the cold weather, and Mount Shasta becomes a ski resort. If you do ski, visit Mt. Shasta Ski Park. But even if you don’t check one of the following things!
This region is a prime cross country and snowshoeing destination in Northern California. No need to search for a route for long. There are tons of easily accessible places there. The closest to downtown is a short Spring Hill trail that starts in the town and leads you to the hill overlooking the ancient volcano and surrounding mountains. Though, don’t expect Mt Shasta to be visible. If the storm were recent, the top of the mountain would be covered with clouds.
Drive for the views
When a storm passes, explore surrounding roads. Shasta Valley Wildlife Area is one of the places to check out. There is plenty of wildlife, three reservoirs, and trails with stunning views. Check their site for details on access, permits, and closures.
There, do not return to town via I-5, but rather select one of the smaller roads. Montague Grenada Rd, 99-97 Cut Off Rd, and Slough Rd are among many that will have a stunning view of Mount Shasta. If you happen to drive onto Rd 97, don’t forget to stop at the Mt. Shasta View Point.
Winter is an amazing season to check out one of the area waterfalls. For example, this one near Fort Jones is an exceptional place after a heavy snowfall. Access road could not be cleaned, so be prepared to walk on snow (or grab snowshoes). Also, when exploring the base of the falls, be extremely careful. Rocks could be slippery or icy; you could slip.
Check my other post for the whole list of the area falls that you could visit: link.
Drive, hike, or ski for the view
Castle Lake Rd that in summer leads to the Castle and Heart Lakes trailhead, is closed midway in the winter season. And from the point of closure, you can walk to the trailhead, snowshoe, or cross ski. We even saw one guy with the snowboard (don’t know why or how). If you not ready for a full track, try to hike to this viewpoint. Sunrise is great from there, but sunsets could be stunning too but be prepared to travel in the dark. Though it’s a road, it goes uphill and could be challenging if you’re not prepared.