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There are many variations of climbing available on the Shasta-Trinity National Forest. Some of these climbing techniques include: bouldering, sport climbing, rock climbing, and mountain climbing. The two better known types of climbing are rock and mountain climbing.
Mt. Shasta Wilderness Regulations
Some special restrictions apply to the Mt. Shasta Wilderness. Group size is limited to 10 persons or less. Camping is limited to seven nights within a 30-day period. Due to scarcity of fuel, wood fires are not permitted. Dogs are not allowed anywhere within the Mt. Shasta Wilderness including the Sierra Club property at Horse Camp.
There are numerous routes to the summits of Mt. Shasta and Shastina. Many of them are considered to be technical climbs requiring special equipment and ability.
Information about these routes, necessary equipment and physical ability is available at the Mt. Shasta and McCloud Ranger Stations, local mountaineering shops and from local guides.
Back country travelers may encounter a variety of dangerous conditions. It is your responsibility to inform yourself about these inherent risks and take precautions. For current route, snow and weather information, call: (530) 926-9613 or visit shastaavalanche.org.
Castle Crags Wilderness
The Castle Crags Wilderness was established in 1984 with the passage of the California Wilderness Act. This 10,500 acre addition to the National Wilderness Preservation System, along with lands within Castle Crags State Park, contains towering granite spires, steep sided canyons, and a few alpine lakes. Most of the area is covered by high brushfields and rocky outcrops with a few wet meadows in the creek headwaters. Mixed conifer forests can be found on the north, east and west facing slopes.
There is no trail through the spires of the Crags and although the rock formations look tempting to rock climbers and other recreationists, safety factors would limit this activity to only a few areas. Most of the Crags formation exhibits a geologic process called exfoliation which is a peeling off and crumbling of the surface of the ancient granitic rock. Exfoliation leaves very unstable surfaces which are unsafe for climbers.
The high granite country of the Trinity Alps and the Trinity Divide have always attracted adventurous rock climbers, but Castle Crags Wilderness and Castle Crags State Park seem to be the focal points for most of this activity. Another area of surging popularity is the Trinity Pinnacles just off Highway 299 West near Burnt Ranch. The Forest Service has no information available on rock climbing, but local guides are available at most book stores.