Just remember, no matter where you go, there you are.

Mt Shasta Backcountry

While there is a groomed nordic center at the Mt. Shasta Ski park, there is also plenty of opportunities for free day touring up on the slopes of Mt. Shasta. One of the most popular accesses is to drive up the Everett Memorial Hwy (which ends at the old ski area which was taken out by a monster avalanche in 1979). The road is usually plowed to Bunny Flats during the winter. But before you drive all the way to Bunny Flats, keep a sharp eye out for the Panther Meadows ski trail on the left. It is marked with a blue cross country skier sign and it is a gentle ski into Panther Meadows.

A great trail for first timers.

Further on is Bunny Flats and the most used trailhead for climbers wanting to tackle Mt. Shasta. Most of the time you will find a well worn trail in the snow up to Horse Camp, a Sierra Club cabin at the base of Avalanche Gulch (there is no overnight lodging in the cabin.) For more adventurous tele skiers, jump on the ridge to the left of the Bunny Flats and follow it up above tree line and you will find yourself on Broadway — a wide, usually safe ridge to ski up to Sun Bowl further up on the right. Or ski back down Broadway back to the car.

The other option is to ski up the snow covered road to the old ski bowl. Great skiing is everywhere up there — remember, it was a ski area.

Naturally, don’t go sticking your neck out just after a huge snowstorm. Check in with local resources (Forest Service or the Fifth Season Hotline) and find out what the current avalanche conditions are. We are lucky we don’t have to deal with as many avalanche conditions in California as they do in places like Colorado or Utah, but if you aren’t sure, stay on the ridges and off of the steeper slopes.

By the way, snowmobiles are only allowed BELOW the Everett Memorial Hwy, so stay above the road.

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