Shasta was very hard. I'm not going to sugarcoat it. These mountains will humble you like no other. The first day I hiked with a group, got to 12600 ft and turned around due to time. I cried when I realized we needed to turn around. Saddened that I couldn't summit. On the hike down, I didn't want to walk away without summiting knowing that I've done most of it already. I thought about it and realized I could try again if I wanted instead of going home the next day.
The next day, I started at 7am, summited at 2pm, got down to the trailhead at 8 pm and car at 10 pm (down the road). The climb up was as brutal as the first day, it was very windy, maybe 30mph around 12000ft. The last 1000 feet of gain was very hard. I didn't pass by anyone. 3 groups passed me on the way up. This was my first 14'er hike on my own. The summit was nothing extraordinary - There were many butterflies on the way up, and bees and flies greeted me at the top. I snapped a few photos and came down. The way down was long, I think because I had climbed yesterday, my legs were pretty fatigued by this time.
Tips: There are a few routes to go up. This time I chose the switchback route which was much easier than the one that is straight down. When you go past the UFO rock, aim for the middle instead of the right side (loose rocks). Keep going once you go past the UFO rock, it is a slow uphill that wraps around to the summit. You might spot hot springs if you follow the sound!
With remarkably low snow for January, our party of 4 camped at the creek the day before with a sunset around 5:30pm. At 5am, we shot up the almost entirely scree covered mountain. Traverses existed, but could easily be destroyed, and the climb up after mushroom rock was abysmal (gravitate towards the largest rock, and hope if doesn't move). 2 of the 4 summited, and then all stumbled down- falling every few feet in what would be a lovely snowy decent otherwise. Returned to camp and made it out by sun set ( 7 hours to summit, 6 hours total to return from camp and leave in car)
Do no recommend, though... it is climbable.