This was part of a trip pursuing county high points for an itinerary that ended up (adaptability and all that) including Modoc, Lassen, Siskiyou, Lake/Colusa, Glenn, Mendocino, Butte, Tehama, Humboldt, & Trinity counties. (As it happens, Siskiyou -- Mt. Shasta -- was the primary objective on this tour, and it was the only unsuccessful summit attempt.)
Black Butte was CoHPing after dark for me, because I lost all that time exploring alternate roads out of Snow Mountain East to no avail, but I also wanted a leg up on the next day.
The roads up until the spur to the summit were just fine and would work for any vehicle. But being uncertain of the spur to the summit, I parked where others have and walked from there. I grabbed some sustenance in the form of two Racer 5s, as well as my headlamp (I’d arrived after 10 p.m.), and I was off.
It turns out I could have easily driven up much farther. That was my first surprise. My second surprise came when the road faded into something for only a ORV, and it became steeper than I’d expected. But, I was almost there and I needed to properly earn those Racer 5 calories anyway. My third surprise came when the 2-track ended and a maintained trail began. I really was expecting a little bit of a bushwhack.
The trail was only the length of a couple brief switchbacks to my fourth and final surprise: a scramble? Who would hold my precious longnecks for me? I detest trail detritus, so I set my half-full bottle next to the empty as incentive to remember them both on the way back.
As it was, the scramble only required a couple uses of the ol’ opposable thumbs. I quickly found the benchmark, but no register. I took a few moments to savor the gorgeous stars as well as the orange glows from whatever scruffy bergs lie on the horizon. But then I had to rush to retrieve the remaining 6 ounces of that nectar of the gods, lest a wily squirrel get wise to the treasure found within that brown longneck.
On the walk I spotted a broad clearing overlooking everything to the west. I was done for the day and it was too perfect to pass up, so I fetched my vehicle and crashed there for the night.
Summited Black Butte with my hiking buddy, Cody. The rental car started to slide on the snow right toward the end of the drive. The trial was clear and fairly short. We ended up at the top with clear skies, late at night, with a breeze. Great experience -- light glowing from the towns in the distance and deep black in the other directions. Kind of expected to see Sasquatch tramp by. There was a PVC Tube register and Benchmark at the rocky top. I'd love to go back during the day but it's a bit of a drive out to it. The Indian Reservation in the valley on the way is a trip. Never been somewhere quite like it. Enjoy!
Marathon weekend driving trip from Orange County. Got lots of drive up (or near drive up peaks) while I heal from an injury. Cahto, Iron, Anthony, Black Butte, Hull, Sanhedrin, Tamalpais, Davidson, & Diablo. With Kiwi the Dog.
Hit several peaks on the day, ending with Black Butte and then Anthony before spending the night in Covelo. Snow blocked vehicle access on the spur road but the trail was mostly snow free.
Probably beautiful with no smoke... :(
Short easy hike up. Drove up to within 500'. First of 4 peaks done this day with Jobe Wymore. Also did Anthony Peak, South Yolla Bolly, and Bully Choop.
Short hike up from the spur road. Nice wide views.
After spending two nights in the King Range Conservation area decided to drive up into the Mendo National Forest and bag these peaks. Drove over to I5 after completing Black Butte.....From the 101 it was over 120 long miles. Glad to be done with this one. Numbers 26 and 27.
But great views, especially of Plaskett Meadows, where I would certainly camp if I ever return to the area.
Hiked this one along with Anthony Peak. Its a long drive but the area is cool. Great views.
Long drive for a short hike, nice views though.
Failed on Brokeoff in Lassen NP earlier in the day, so made the long drive down to Black Butte for another county hp. Still a fair amount of snow up there for a 7er! Barely got my rental Kia up there. Jeep road to the TH was still impassable.
Easy hike on a beautiful day. It took a lot longer to drive to the trailhead than to hike the trail.
A fun day with Ryan, tagging Anthony and Black Butte. Except the part about the barf. Trip Report
On a COHP venture with Dad. I barfed in the van on the drive up. Fun job Dad got cleaning it up. :-)
Nearly continuous snow cover from the main road. Hiked along with Anthony Pk.
They had just literally plowed the pass road open - we saw the plow crew eating lunch aside the road. We were the first up in 2003 so far as we knew. Lots of snow up high, lots of postholing. Saw fresh bear tracks. Great hike!
Visited on the way to the Mendocino Coast from Snow Mt.
The skies were very smokey from a lighting sparked fire just to the south. The road had only been reopened a couple of days before. Combined this with Anthony Peak, the Mendocino County highpoint. Apparently, as evidenced by the log entries, this butte is used quite often by firefighters as a lookout during the fight over the years.
Nice views up and down the range.