Mt. Shasta (Northern California; 14,162')

Mt. Shasta is a dormant volcano that sticks out of the plains south of the Siskiyous and north of the San Joaquin Valley. It is not really part of any range, but just a solitary representative of the Pacific Ring of Fire. The huge elevation gain from the plains make it very impressive, both from below and from the summit, but it also means that AMS is likely to strike unless you are pre-acclimatized. The routes vary from endless boring slogs to good glacier routes to crumbly ridges. The difficulty and seriousness of all routes depends hugely on conditions. Also be aware that Shasta has a tendency to create its own local weather pattern, and that high winds near the summit are common even in clear weather.

Topo Map


Hotlum-Bolam Ridge (easy glacier travel and/or Class 4)


S.F. Porcella and C.M. Burns, Climbing California's Fourteeners , The Mountaineers (Seattle, WA 1998)

J. Smoot, Summit Guide to the Cascade Volcanoes , Chockstone Press (Evergreen, CO 1992)

Mt. Shasta from the NW in late August

Date: August 10-11, 1994

Party: Dietrich Belitz and J. David Cohen

Route: Hotlum-Bolam Ridge

Equipment: 50m rope, crampons, ice axe



Trip report: