Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Sunset Sunrise Shasta Soiree - Sunrise

The second half of our Shasta plan - Sunrise from Ash Creek Butte. Ash Creek Butte sits just northeast of Mt. Shasta and I figured it would be about the best place around to watch the sunrise. Ash Creek Butte from the north.

The forest is pretty dense on this side of the peak, but we managed to find a great campsite in a large open meadow just north of Ash Creek Butte.

Our meadow from above.

The view from camp.

I woke up at 4am and made coffee in the dark. Kristen, Hops, and I were hiking up through the trailless slopes of Ash Creek Butte by 6am. The first part of the hike went straight up a somewhat heavily logged slope to the western ridge. We hiked with headlamps, but by the time we reached the ridge the sun was just beginning to light up the upper pyramid of Mt. Shasta. We, of course, stopped and watched.

The ridge was good walking, with the talus filled north bowl to one side and the glow of Mt. Shasta on the other.

Our route followed this ridge to the summit.

Looking down the ridge.

We made the summit in a long hour and a half.

The view to the east.

Lots of birds perched on the summit watching the sunrise with us.

The women on the summit. Plus dog.

Shasta and our ascent ridge with the shadow of Ash Creek Butte stretched out across the forest below us.

Summit panorama.

The hike down through gnarly trees and a still dark forest.

Map of route. 3 miles. 3000' total vertical.

We got back to camp by breakfast burrito time.

On the way out, the Tercel and the Prius saw some off-road action like they've probably never seen before.

We spent the last half of Labor Day lounging beneath the falls on the McCloud River. A little fishing, some beers, food, naps. Labor Day.

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