Sunday, September 19, 2010

Mt. Shasta Area Trip - 9/12/10 Day 3 - Mossbrae Falls Hike , Lake Siskiyou , Castle Lake

After breakfast we set off on the bikes to check out Mossbrae Falls. From Cave Springs we headed north on Dunsmuir Ave. for about a block before turning left on Scarlett Way (Shasta Retreat). We rode a short ways downhill and then over a bridge crossing the Sacramento River where we locked our bikes next to the train tracks. From there it was about a mile walk along the tracks to the spur trail leading to Mossbrae Falls. The train tracks parallel the Sacramento River offering great views along the way.

Rail Trail to Mossbrae Falls with Sacramento River on the right

Be aware that the tracks are live and trains do come by frequently, as we crossed paths with one on our way to the falls.

Patriotic Engine

Just before a steel bridge is the path leading to the falls. Mossbrae Falls is nothing short of amazing!

Mossbrae Falls

Panoramic --Click Image To Enlarge--

We enjoyed the beauty of the Falls for quite some time before moving on. It’s hard to leave such a magical place.

We headed back out to the tracks and crossed the steel bridge.

110 Year old Steel Bridge

Just across the bridge were some blackberry brambles with some good picking. A short ways further down the tracks brought us to the first in a series of small waterfalls.

Small Waterfall

Wildflowers are more prevalent on this side of the bridge, perhaps because of the shade offered.

Crimson Columbine

Aster or Daisies

Several hundred feet further down the track brought us to more waterfalls.


Another Spring

Because most people turn back after Mossbrae Falls we had this area all to ourselves. We continued a short ways further to Shasta Springs, the old location of a Resort where the train would stop to let passengers drink the fresh spring water. The resort is long gone but the springs remain. There are two good sized waterfalls emerging from the hillside, unfortunately they are terribly overgrown and it is hard to get a good view.

Shasta Springs

Sweet Pea & Shasta Springs

It was mid day and the sun was strong as we walked back along the tracks towards the trailhead.

Hot Tracks

We made it back to our bikes in short order and rode back to our cabin at Cave Springs.

After lunch we drove north on I5 for several minutes before exiting in Mt. Shasta and heading to Lake Siskiyou. We parked in the lot just before the damn and walked down to the shoreline.

Lake Siskiyou

We decided to drive over to the marina by the campground and see about a boat rental. Unfortunately none were available so we moved on.

We drove a short ways to Castle Lake rd. and from there it was seven miles on a mountain road to Castle Lake. The road to Castle Lake offers great views of Mt. Shasta and Black Butte as well as great dispersed camping.

Black Butte

Castle Lake is beautifully set in a cirque surrounded by cliffs. There is a trail leading along the east shore of the lake which ascends to Little Castle Lake and Bradley Ridge with an optional spur trail to Heart Lake. We will do the full hike on another adventure, on this trip we walked a short ways down the trail and found a nice spot to sit by Castle Lake. Kayaking and fishing was popular and we even saw a couple of swimmers as well.

Castle Lake & Paintbrush

We then headed back to Dunsmuir for the rest of the evening.

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