Fun Things To Do Near Chico, California: Go Climb A Volcano!

We are fortunate, here in Chico, CA, to live near an abundance of wonderful recreation destinations.

Mount Lassen is an active volcano, located only about an hour north of Chico, near Chester, California, the mountain town in which I grew up.

The drive, in and of itself, is a beautiful adventure, and one of my favorites of all time. Highway 32, although very curvy, meanders alongside Deer Creek and provides gorgeous views of the creek, canyons and a variety of trees and lush greenery. Make sure that you leave early enough to explore along the way! A few of my favorite spots include the Potato Patch Campground, the falls, and the rock drinking fountain that seems to appear out of nowhere!

Lassen Volcanic National Park is located in Northeastern California, and the nearest airports include Sacramento, California, and Reno, Nevada both around 160 miles away. The park itself includes over 150 miles of hiking trails, beautiful views of the Cascades and the High Sierras, numerous lakes, and the ever-popular active hydrothermal areas. There are also several gorgeous campgrounds. It’s important to call ahead prior to visiting, due to the fact that most areas of the park have severely restricted access due to the snow base and/or weather conditions.

Resize 2  0688The view from the bottom is a lot less intimidating than it is after you’ve walked about 10 minutes!We visited the park last August, and found the weather and conditions absolutely perfect for climbing the daunting peak. The air was cool upon arrival, and there were still walls of snow evident in many areas. However, the hike up the volcano is extremely strenuous (5 miles round trip) and the sun is hot at 8500 feet. It took us about 3 hours to reach the top, and we were sun-burned by the time we made it!

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We FINALLY made it to the top!!


The true beauty in the hike is the actual journey. With each turn of the switchback, visitors are rewarded with a new, stunning view.

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Resize 0713The closer you get to the top, the more difficult and narrow the trail becomes. Resize 0712The rewards of a very long, difficult climb? Unsurpassed views of gorgeous mountain lakes and endless mountain ranges!Looking for something else fun to do?

A couple of ideas! Hiking in Bidwell Park

Swimming at One Mile

Exploring the Swimming Holes of Upper Park

Strolling through Downtown Chico

Experiencing the Farmer’s Market

Blossom Tour

Fine dining at Sierra Nevada Brewery

For more ideas on fun things to do and places to go near Chico CA, visit me again here soon!

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