Ash Creek Butte is a shield volcano that predates its massive neighbor Mt. Shasta to the west. The summit of Mt. Shasta is only 7.5 air miles west of the summit of Ash Creek Butte.
The National Forest Boundary that separates Klamath National Forest and the Shasta – Trinity National Forest goes right over the summit of Ash Creek Butte. Ash Creek Butte ranks #120 on the California Prominence List and it has 2,258 feet of prominence. The Whaleback is another California Prominence Peak that is located just north of Ash Creek Butte and it is worth visiting as well.
Ash Creek Butte is located on the east side of Mt. Shasta between Hwy 97 and Hwy 89. Access is from either of these Highways.
From Hwy 89 east of the town of Mc Cloud, take the turn off that access the east side climbing routes of Mt. Shasta. This road is paved for a few miles before turning into a wide high speed gravel road. Pass both of these, Clear Creek and Brewer Creek trailheads and access an unmarked dirt road on the east side of the road at GPS 41.4495N, 122.0802W. This road shows on the Topo’s..
From Hwy 97 north of the town of Weed about 14 miles, take paved road 19 that goes to the Deer Mountain Snowmobile Park. This road is paved for several miles past Deer Mountain before turning into a wide high speed gravel road labeled 42N12 on the forest service map. Follow the road to the turn off at an unmarked dirt road on the east side of the road at GPS 41.4495N, 122.0802W. This road shows on the Topo’s..
The Topo’s show more roads than the forest service map. The forest service map only shows one road that goes south east and then curls up on the south side of Ash Creek Butte. DO NOT take this road unless you want a new paint job and want to bush whack to the summit. Instead stay left at the fork about ¼ mile from the turn off and head up the mountain to the north. You enter an old logged out area and the rest of the drive is through this logged area. This is still a good dirt road but it is not high speed. In about a mile you need to take a right turn towards Ash Creek Butte. The GPS is 41.4669N, 122.0738W of this road and it is fairly straight traversing up the mountain. There is a fork in about ¾ mile and stay left. Follow the road up through 3 switchbacks to nearly the end. Just before the end of the road you reach a crest in a wide area with plenty of parking. Park here, you are only about 1 mile from the summit of Ash Creek Butte.
No permits are required. Maps and information are available at:
McCloud Ranger Station
P.O. Box 1620
2019 Forest Road
McCloud, CA 96057
Mount Shasta Ranger Station
204 West Alma
Mt. Shasta, CA 96067
Goosenest Ranger District
37805 Highway 97
Macdoel, CA, 96058
Red Tape Link
When To Climb
The summer use period is approximately June 15 to October 15, although early spring could open up the lower areas by Memorial Day. Your experience will be enhanced and impacts will be lessened by avoiding weekends and holidays, and heavily used areas. Snowstorms can arrive unexpectedly, and hypothermia is a concern anytime of the year. Go to When to Climb Link
A critter worth mentioning is the mosquito. At times they are thick and hungry. It would be advisable to carry insect repellent in your pack.
The closest campgrounds are near McCloud and on Mt. Shasta. The following link has campground information near McCloud.
This is a summer hike unless you have a snowmobile or enjoy cross country hiking and snow camping. Snowmobiling is very popular in this area and there is at least one report of a snowmobile causing an avalanche in the Ash Creek Butte Bowl while high marking. Fortunately, his companions were able to dig him out before he died.
Go to the following link for more information.