Scenic USA - California

Scenic USA offers a collection of select photographs from a wide variety of attractions, points of interest, historic sites, state parks and
national parks found throughout the United States. Each photo feature is coupled with a brief explanation.
For further detailed information, links to other related sites are provided.


Mount Lassen

Mount Lassen - California

Photo by Ken Reece
Ken Reece Photography

     California's Mount Lassen is primarily known for its recent volcanic geology. Its last major eruption in 1915 is well documented, and the area's boiling springs, mud pots and steaming fumaroles suggest this southern Cascade Mountain is still located on an active hot spot. Mount St. Helens and Mount Lassen share the distinction of the only two Cascade volcanic eruptions during the 20th century in America.
     Lassen Peak, centerpiece of today's Lassen Volcanic National Park, awoke from a 27,000 year old slumber at the start of the 20th Century, spreading volcanic ash in a 200 mile radius. A series of eruptions occurred from 1914 through 1917, with the big one coming in 1915 that blew out a 1000 foot wide crater near the summit of Lassen Peak. The pyroclastic flows doused a three mile area with chunks of hot lava and ash. Hot avalanches transformed snow layers into highly fluid lahars, creating a 10 mile path of destruction.
     Today, you find the park's unique geography features through a series of hiking trails. These trails may lead to some of the park's 700 different flowering plant species, as well as a wide variety of wildlife habitats. Park elevations may vary from 5000 to 10,000 feet, seeing unequal amounts of precipitation, and diverse soil types that create so many different environmental niches.
     This view of Mount Lassen, catching the last few rays of a southern Cascade sun, was taken from the Manzanita Lake Campground. More than 50 wilderness lakes are spread throughout the park, some named by early pioneers who followed trails blazed by William Nobles and Peter Lassen.



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