You would never know it driving by, but Old Station is the perfect place to stay if you want to fish, hike, relax, or explore.
It has some of the most interesting places to see and some of the most beautiful hikes one can do.
Tracey Dahlen Photography
within a half mile of the cabins
Explore the underground world of a lava tube. The self-guided trail is approximately 1/3 mile long and the cave is completely dark, so don't forget to bring a flashlight. The floor is rough and jagged so wear sturdy shoes. A light jacket will ward off the chill as the cave remains a cool 46 degrees F. Neither hardhats nor crawling is required! Great for families!
GEOLOGY - Less than 20,000 yeas ago the lava of the Hat Creek flow was discharged in large volumes from a series of north-south fissures (cracks in the earth). This river of lava located near the town of Old Station, crawled northward 16 miles, covering the floor of Hat Creek Valley. While the top crust cooled and hardened, rivers of red-hot lava insulated by newly formed rock above, continued to flow. Eventually, the lava drained away, leaving tube-like caves. The entrance to the cave was formed by a partial collapse of the cave’s roof many years ago. Subway Cave is the largest accessible tube in the flow.
Fishing in this area is known all around to be excellent!
Hat Creek represents the quintessential chess game of spring creek fly fishing for wary trout.
It bubbles out of the numerous aquifers near Mt Lassen and runs clear and cold throughout the season, providing ample habitat for a variety of different aquatic insects, including stoneflies, caddisflies, and multiple mayfly species. The shallow, easily waded riffles and long glass-smooth flats of Hat Creek offer ideal holding water for the stream’s resident rainbow and brown trout, and it is perfectly suited to fly fishing.
Hat Creek is one of the longest spring creeks in California, and is generally broken up into two main sections. Upper Hat Creek runs for over thirty miles from its headwaters in Lassen National Park downstream towards the small community of Cassel. Much of this section of river runs through private land, but there are several sections that are well stocked throughout the season and a popular family camping and fishing spot. The Wild Trout Section is the lower 3.2 miles of Hat Creek flowing from the PowerHouse #2 to Lake Britton and is the home of the best fly fishing water.
Hat Creek opens to fishing on the last Saturday in April and remains open through November 15.
It is a spring creek that flows mostly un-impacted by runoff, running clear and cold consistently almost every day of the season.
29 miles from the cabins
The park is within the Cascade Range and Modoc Plateau natural region, with forest and five miles of streamside and lake shoreline, including a portion of Lake Britton.
The park's centerpiece is the 129-foot Burney Falls, which is not the highest or largest waterfall in the state, but possibly the most beautiful. Additional water comes from springs, joining to create a mist-filled basin. Burney Creek originates from the park's underground springs and flows to Lake Britton, getting larger along the way to the majestic falls.
The park's landscape was created by volcanic activity as well as erosion from weather and streams. This volcanic region is surrounded by mountain peaks and is covered by black volcanic rock, or basalt. Created over a million years ago, the layered, porous basalt retains rainwater and snow melt, which forms a large underground reservoir.
Within the park, the water emerges as springs at and above Burney Falls, where it flows at 100 million gallons every day.
Burney Falls was named after pioneer settler Samuel Burney who lived in the area in the 1850s. The McArthurs were pioneer settlers who arrived in the late 1800s. Descendants were responsible for saving the waterfall and nearby land from development. They bought the property and gave it to the state as a gift in the 1920s.
Spatter Cone Trail
within a mile of the cabins
Spattercone Trail is a 1.5 mile loop trail will take you to the origin of the recent Hat Creek Lava Flow, an area with many spattercones and volcanic features. Some portions of the trail are steep and the trail has very little shade. Due to hot, dry conditions, it is best to take this hike in the early morning or late afternoon. Carry water! For a detailed map and more information click here for a PDF file.
Hat Creek Rim View
within 3 miles of the cabins
You can drive to the Hat Creek Rim overlook to take a short stroll on the PCT and view the dramatic geology of Hat Creek Valley. The overlook is located on Highway 44, three miles east of the junction of Highway 89/44 near Old Station, Calif.
Outfitted with viewing scopes, this overlook offers a great vantage point of Lassen Peak (10,457 feet), Mount Shasta (14,162 feet), Crater Peak (8,677 feet), Burney Mountain (8,550 feet), and Magee Peak (8,550 feet). Hat Creek Rim Overlook includes interpretive signs, restrooms, picnic sites, parking space for RVs, but no water.
Hiking in Lassen National Volcanic Park
The north entrance to the park is 14 miles from the cabins
Lassen Volcanic National Park Named ‘Yosemite Without the Crowds’ by Reader’s Digest. You don’t hear about Lassen Volcanic National Park when the top national parks in the United States are discussed, and maybe that’s a good thing.
Reader’s Digest recently released a list of 15 Less Crowded Alternatives to the Most Popular Tourist Attractions and of course, Lassen made the list. The popular publication recommends visitors avoid the Yosemite crowds and instead head to the geological marvel that is Lassen Volcanic National Park. Here’s what they said:
Near Redding, California (just over two hours north of Sacramento), Lassen Volcanic National Park bubbles and steams just like Yosemite National Park albeit without the crowds—it’s one of our favorite off-the-beaten-path national parks. The scenic drive from Redding boasts mountainous scenery, and once you arrive, you’ll discover this is the only spot in the world where all four different types of volcanos are found in one spot (shield, composite, cinder cone, and plug dome). Whether you’re into geology or just like to see something new, the hydrothermal activity provides plenty to explore. Don’t worry, picnicking is a favorite pastime, too, amid the wildflowers and crystalline lake backdrops.
Crystal Lake Fish Hatchery
approximately 20 miles from the cabins