clock May 15, 2010
author Chris Sopa

Mount Shasta

Please contain yourself…you get 2 days worth of blogging in one!  Yes, I know…too much to handle.

Yesterday I left Baker, NV at 5:20am and began my 9 ½ hour drive to Mt. Shasta, CA.  I passed several interesting things along my drive…just to name a few:

  • A house that had a gazebo (which you had to walk through to get to the front door) made COMPLETELY of bull horns!  (Now, this was the ONLY house I saw for miles and I have to say , if I would have broken down, I still would NOT have stopped there…just a feeling!)
  • I passed about 4 cars my first 400 miles…I was so excited I waved but no one waved back.  I guess they weren’t as excited to see me.  (They must not be reading my blog!)
  • Drove into an actual cloud and was “in it” for miles!  I was so high up in elevation at one point that I could see a cloud hovering right below the mountain in front of me and it looked like a big white blanket covering the bottom part of the mountain!  Sooo cool!  When I drove through it, I could see the front of my car…that was it!

Entering the “cloud”…..

  • Drove through many, many National Forests on my way to CA.  Beautiful!!
  • By chance, I stopped by a small convenience store in the town of Ely, Nevada due to my severe twitching from lack of coffee.  I happened to ask the lady at the register if she knew where I could get a memory card for my camera and she said, “Oh, you mean one of these.”  Allelujah!!!  Camera now works!!

I was so excited to get a new memory card for my camera I took a picture of Shayla, the lady who sold it to me!

  • Drove on Route 50 for 278 miles!!!  That is almost as long as it takes me to get to Ohio!
  • Passed through the towns of Ely, Eureka, Austin, Fallon, Carson City and Reno.
  • Passed signs that said:
    • Major deer crossing ahead.
    • Antelope crossing.
    • You are in fire danger!  (I could not figure out if this meant actual fire or someone was going to shoot me???)
  • Went through my first “inspection station” at the CA border and all they did was ask me where I was coming from.  I was hoping some hot man was going to have to frisk me…no such luck!

One of my many driving scenes…

Once I finally got into Shasta County, about an hour or so from Mt. Shasta, I was driving through the most beautiful forests I have ever seen.  Although, my view was obstructed several times by flying wood chips!  I felt like I was under attack!  Wood chips everywhere!!!  I think Kia still has one somewhere under her hood…

Forest view with Mount Shasta in the background

As I got closer to Mt. Shasta, I could actually feel the mountain.  Mount Shasta is the most sacred mountain in the United States and there are many stories surrounding her mystery.  Often you will see lenticular clouds (large, round, flat, layered clouds) floating above her glistening peak like snowy sand dollars.  Some say these clouds cloak the “space ships” that hover over her at times.   Some believe the ancient people of Lemuria or Atlantis live underneath her in underground caves.  The word “Shasta” in Sanskrit means “teacher.”  All I can say is that when you are close to her, you can feel and hear her “teachings” of peace, serenity, stillness, and oneness.

Beautiful Mount Shasta taken on my way up the mountain on my hike

This morning I had the pleasure of hiking up the mountain.  I began by stopping at the Visitor Center and the National Forest center to get my maps and advisories for the day.  I then stopped at an awesome adventure store, “The Fifth Season,” to rent my snow shoes and poles and was helped by great guy named Ben.  Ben and his wife moved here to Mt. Shasta 6 months ago from Arkansas after he hiked the Pacific Trail and fell in love with the area.  (I can so relate because I am right there with him…don’t be surprised if I move soon!)  I told him what I have been doing and we had a great conversation!  He is going to check out the blog so….”Hi Ben!”

My lovely snow shoes

I drove to the top which dead ended into the Bunny Flat where everyone starts their hike up the mountain.  I strapped on my snow shoes and off I went!  This was my very first “snow” hike and I loved it!  Even though there was tons and tons of snow around me, I wasn’t cold at all.  It was a steep climb up but so beautiful!  The majority of the people hiking the trail were hiking to a place called “Horse Camp” where they camped out for the night to actually climb to the peak of the mountain the next day.  (I am sooo doing this next time!!)  The people I saw where mostly groups of men, a few women sprinkled here and there, but lots of testosterone flying in the air!!!  Macho men climbing a mountain!!!

Bunny Flat

On my way up I chatted with a guy named Rick who lives here and hikes the mountain weekly.  He is an aspiring motivational speaker so we had a great conversation and he even took my picture!  (Now I have TWO pictures with me in it!!!)

Near the top…

Once I got to Horse Camp I found a place at the base of the mountain to plop, took off my snow shoes, ate lunch and meditated and napped for an hour.  A cute little bird decided to land on my pole and say hi and woke me up (scared the shit out me actually!).

My nap and meditation area…

The view when I opened my eyes from my nap

Other hikers and the cabin at the top (or what you can see of it!)

I finally decided it was time to descend and on my way down I ran into a gorgeous man (sorry, I had to add that!) named Melio and we chatted for quite awhile.  He actually thought I was “cool” for doing this alone and we gave each other a high five with our snow poles before we left.    I love it here because no one thinks I am crazy!  Everyone “gets me” and KNOWS why I want to do these types of things.  Kindred spirits, I guess.

On my way down…

Overall the hike took me a total of 4 hours and was the most beautiful hike I have ever taken!

I seriously am thinking about organizing a “women’s group” to come here for a sacred journey and hike and climb the mountain next year at this time.  I met a woman who organizes trips like that here and it is totally do-albe.  Let me know if you’re in ladies!!!

I got back to my hotel, changed my clothes and decided to see what the little town of Mt. Shasta had to offer.  One word will describe what I found…..

Need I say more….

Yes, it is true.  More crystals!!!  I think I need another suitcase for my flight home!!???

I would have seriously bought this if I thought for a minute it would fit in my suitcase…do you think Homeland Security would let me on the plane with this????

Tomorrow I will be hiking the Castle Crags and McCloud River Waterfalls Trails near Mt. Shasta.  Both of them together will take me the majority of the day.

Now I am going to go eat my Italian food I ordered and give thanks for the beauty of my life to be able to have the kind of experience I had today.

Peace and love….Chris