At the very top of Northern California - in more ways than
one - is Siskiyou
County, home of majestic Mount Shasta, the Klamath
Wildlife Refuges, the Marble Mountains Wilderness, and a rich
expanse of mountain ranges, forests and valleys. Complementing
its voluptuous topography are friendly communities practiced
in the art of welcoming visitors.
The county, one of California's largest, is divided about
in half by all-season Interstate 5, the principal access artery.
Locals like to divide Siskiyou
County into three distinct regions: the Alpine Vistas
& Villages Region and Valleys & Volcanoes Region, everything
east of I-5; and the Gold Country Region, everything west
The Alpine Vistas & Villages region encompasses the
mountain towns of Dunsmuir, McCloud and Mt. Shasta, but what
first grabs the attention of the traveler is something entirely
made by nature: a huge, snow-capped sentinel.
Fourteen-thousand foot Mount Shasta has irresistible power.
Its energy vortices and legendary Lemurian mountain folk notwithstanding,
the mountain commands your gaze. Of course, in this case,
the stage is a horizon dominated by timber, water and rock.
Mt. Shasta is a dormant volcano that, at half the height of
Everest, is a perfect peak for beginning and expert mountaineers.
It also exudes a spiritual serenity that even day hikers and
drivers can feel deeply.
No less a spectacle are the soaring granite spires of Castle
Crags State Park, located just southwest of Shasta. A
number of hiking trails, catch-and-release fishing, and incredible
rock climbing are favorite pastimes here.