A recent series of storms has left a white cloak across Lassen Volcanic National Park, where the scenic drive has turned into a wintry playground for visitors.
"The scenic drive through Lassen Volcanic National Park has been transformed by the recent storms to a scenic winter trail," says Lassen Superintendent Darlene M. Koontz.
While crews are no longer plowing the road for wheeled traffic, it is open for sledding, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing.
Ranger-led snowshoe walks for the general public leave from the Kohm Yah-mah-nee Visitor Center - open year-round - on Saturdays and Sundays at 1:30 p.m. from December 17 to April 8. New this year, rangers will lead more challenging snowshoe hikes to Ridge Lakes on December 30 and March 24, available by reservation only. Call (530) 595-6133 to make reservations for special programs or organized groups.
To commemorate National Winter Trails Day on Saturday, January 7, a special snowshoe program will be offered at 10:30 a.m. from the Kohm Yah-mah-nee Visitor Center. Visitors can also spend a wonderful winter day at the Lassen Film Festival on Saturday, January 14, beginning at 10 a.m. Films that highlight park and outdoor recreation will be shown in the visitor center auditorium. Visitors can plan for a fun day of snow play, lunch at the Lassen Café, and viewing one or more films.
Lassen Volcanic National Park is also pleased to announce that with the assistance from Caltrans, four highway signs have been installed in surrounding communities to inform travelers about the park road status. The signs indicate whether travel through the park is possible and provide a phone number for updated road conditions.
During the fall and spring, when rapidly changing weather requires temporary road closures, the signs will help alert travelers prior to their arrival. Signs are located at the following highway junctions: 36 / 99 near Red Bluff; 36 / 89 near Chester; 89 / 44 near Old Station; approximately 10 miles east of Interstate 5 on 44 near Millville. More detailed information on current park conditions can be found online at www.nps.gov/lavo
Visitors traveling to the park should be prepared for winter weather and driving conditions. Carry tire chains in your vehicle from October through May, along with extra food, water, and blankets. For more information, please contact the park at (530) 595-4480, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. or visit the park website at www.nps.gov/lavo