Three May days in McCloud

We love that we can get away the Thursday before the weekend, however we never have reservations anywhere so it becomes a task finding camping spots. One year we stayed in a one night only spot at Burney Falls, moved on to the parking lot at Lava Beds and then waited for someone to leave at little Orr Lake. It wasn’t until we couldn’t get into Fowler’s Campground that we discovered Cattle Camp and this has been our go to spot ever since- as they don’t take reservations. It’s been dicey also with one year getting the last spot, last year the second to the last spot and this year any spot we wanted due to potential rainy weather. Arriving around 7 we drove through the campground and decided to take #2 as the back area was private and neighbors were far away. We set up, made beds, cooked dinner and settled in.

Nothing better than waking up in the Airstream on the first morning out!

Great site to spread out and private.

Woke up to overcast skies but mild temps so we decided to drive the 35 miles to Medicine Lake and kayak. The drive abruptly ended when we hit snow 10 miles from the lake and chose to turn around. As we made our way back we stopped numerous times to investigate the Lava formations and vegetation. Jot Dean Ice Cave is the most noted Lava formation and lived up to its name. We also saw flowers that we did not know the names of and that became the focal point of the drive back along with more sun in the sky. We drove into Algoma to check out its camping status and had lunch along the McCloud River. Back at camp we relaxed and later took a hike along the river. Dinner and a movie rounded out the evening.

So bummed that we couldn’t go further, but we turned that disappointment into a nice drive back to camp with flower stops.

Jot Dean Ice Cave was interesting – would go further into it except it was as the name states icy.

I had never seen this plant – its called Indian Warrior. I am a crazy flower person, and know most if not all Northern CA flowers, and this plant threw me for a loop.

Lunch at Algoma Campground and I spied this little beauty. Must of been an old residence to have an apple tree or the McCloud River which flows past planted it.

Saturday morning and it was crystal clear out. Blue skies always make me happy! We left camp around 10 and drove to Upper Falls. We walked to the overlook and then hiked to Lakin Dam. Hiked back to Upper Falls and then hiked to Middle Falls. Back in the car we drove to Fowler’s campground and walked to Lower Falls and through the campground which was full, with numerous empty reserved spots. We had lunch in McCloud (after a long wait) at Axe and Rose, walked around the Mushroom Festival, ran into a couple from home, and drove through town watching gray skies come in. Back at camp we made a late afternoon campfire, had champagne, ate dinner and walked around the campground which was now full.

The famous rope swing. The walk here is so easy – we just need to return when the weather is better.

Lakin Dam. Funny to find out about it from our son, after coming here for the last four years and never knew about it.

Insert name of this interesting water flower.

Middle Falls

McCloud Mushroom Festival.

Mt. Shasta from McCloud.

The rain began in the night as expected, but the morning showed up with a dusting of snow! So thankful for the Airstream! After breakfast we headed to Mt. Shasta to visit the museum. This is a place not to be missed as it’s attached to the fish hatchery and there is something for everyone. We spent a good two hours looking at all the varieties of trout and the museum exhibits. We headed into Mt. Shasta for lunch and to walk around town. After that we headed up the mountain to see how far we could go. Made it to Bunny Flat where everyone was either snow camping, climbing or sledding. Back at camp we pulled out the portable fire stove and had a glass of wine. I wanted to have a fire but the ground was saturated. Amazingly the campground was still pretty full with both trailers and tents. We walked around the campground, settled in for dinner and a movie.

Bunny Flat

Wet wood – no problem!

On the ride home we stopped to see the Shasta Dam.

Lots of water behind that cement!

Monday morning and it was time to think about leaving and of course the weather was better and we slept in. Decided to stop at the Shasta Dam – hoping to get a tour – but the elevator was not working that takes one into the inner part of the dam. It is a spectacular spot that is well worth a stop. Home and ready for the week after a dump in the driveway. Time to think about summer coming – and maybe the weather will eventually heat up finally.

Nice to have a dump station at home.