Mt Shasta (Eastern Slopes)

Growing up north of Mt Shasta, I spent much of my childhood becoming intimately familiar with her from that angle. I’ve lived south of Mt Shasta for the bulk of my adult life, gaining appreciation of her southern flanks. For those driving I-5, it’s the western slopes that are most often photographed.

This was my first opportunity to hike Mt Shasta’s eastern shoulders. On this fall day, we accessed the mountain via the Brewer Creek Trailhead.

Starting elevation is about 7,300′

Mt Shasta creates her own weather, with this day being no exception.

The Hotlum Glacier (California’s largest), the Wintun Glacier (California’s 3rd largest) and the Hotoon permanent snowfield are visible along this route.

As the trail approaches Brewer Creek, the first of many ridges is visible running south along the base of Mt Shasta

Many dry rocky gulches were found in September, as was Brewer Creek.

View looking east toward Sugar Pine Butte

View looking south, southeast.

An example of the volcanic rock

Early season snow on Mt Shasta’s eastern flanks

This was one of those shy days for our lady. Instead of seeing her majestic self, we were entertained by the ever changing clouds and a few snow flurries.

Jan’s Tips:

(1) Study your driving map carefully, we found the directions from several sources confusing and inaccurate. If you are accessing the trail from Highway 89, plan on a one-hour drive from McCloud.

(2) Dogs are not allowed.

(3) A free wilderness permit, obtained at trailhead, is required to hike in the wilderness below 10,000 feet; a summit pass is required above that elevation.

(4) From the Brewer Creek Trailhead, except for the trail to the creek, there are no established or signed trails. I recommend gps, maps and compass. This is not a place you want to be lost!

(5) Respect the mountain, respect the weather. Be prepared for cold windy conditions and unpredictable storms.

(6) Don’t count on available water, it may either be frozen or it may be a dry season.

(7) See Jan’s Trail Links page for resources.

5 thoughts on “Mt Shasta (Eastern Slopes)

  1. Pingback: Mount Eddy | Jan's Jaunts and Jabberings

  2. Great photos! I’m headed there this wknd. Thank you for giving me a sneak peak at what I’ll get to see, hike, climb, and snowboard. This will be my 6th trip to
    Mount Shasta, 1st time using Brewer Creek TH.


  3. Jan-
    I am staying at Camp 4 McCloud this weekend and the Brewer Creek/Ash Creek Falls trail has been suggested. In looking at the Hike Mt Shasta site (and especially YOUR comments), it looks like a fantastic hike but difficult to follow. My group is not a bunch of mountaineers, just a reasonably fit group of people that would love to explore what looks to be an incredibly scenic and unique trail. What can you recommend so that we will be able to successfully navigate from the end of the marked trail at Brewer Creek to the “big payoff” view to Ash Creek Falls?? What time of day do you recommend and how much time would you allocate?
    On another note… difficult is it to get to the Little Mt Hoffman Fire Lookout?
    Your help, expertise, and advice is most appreciated!!

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