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Ski Mountaineering on Mount Shasta

Mount Shasta | California
5.00
1 REVIEW
Trip Highlights

Top reasons to ski mountaineer on Mount Shasta

  • Trip Highlight

    Escape the crowds and find inner peace in this mountainous haven

  • Trip Highlight

    Feel a sense of pride upon scaling one of twelve California’s 14ers

  • Trip Highlight

    Soak in the picture-postcard vistas that the snow-capped volcanic peak offers

If you’ve ever wondered what conquering a volcanic mountain peak would be like, look no further! Shaped for centuries by numerous layers of hardened lava, Mt. Shasta has become one of the most stunning ice-topped volcanoes whose sublime beauty bedazzles even the most seasoned ski mountaineers. Standing at an elevation of 14,179 ft (4,322 m) and boasting an abundance of accessible routes with open glades and quality snowpack, the second-highest peak in the Cascades is ideal for those in quest of a challenging, yet immensely rewarding ski mountaineering experience. You’ll be accompanied by a professional guide whose main priority is your safety, so you can put your mind at ease and have a blast on this stunning mountain. Find out more about Mount Shasta, one of the best backcountry locations in California, from 57hours in collaboration with local guides.

Season

April through May

Nearest city

Redding, CA, is 1.5 hours away

Duration

1-3 days

Skill level

Intermediate to advanced

Itineraries

Choose how your spend your days

Full-day Ski Mountaineering Trip on Mount Shasta

Full-day

Summit Mount Shasta in one single and continuous push with an experienced guide navigating you along the way. After climbing and skiing 7,000 vertical feet (2,134 m) in order to reach the top, get back to the trailhead without camping or taking long breaks. This 12-hour trip is strenuous, but you’ll reap incredible rewards and soak up stunning views. The ascent and descent options include Avalanche Gulch, West Face, Brewer Creek, and Clear Creek.

2-day Ski Mountaineering Trip on Mount Shasta

2 days

Treat yourself to two days of ski mountaineering on one of the most spectacular volcanic mountains the U.S. has to offer. While climbing the peak with your guide, you’ll get to brush up on your ski mountaineering skills and discover some phenomenal panoramic views that no photo can do justice to. There are multiple ascent and descent options such as Avalanche Gulch, West Face, Brewer Creek, and Clear Creek.

3-day Ski Mountaineering Trip on Mount Shasta

3 days

Get ready for an unforgettable 3-day/2-night ski mountaineering adventure and scale the magnificent Mount Shasta. Sharpen your ice axe, crampons, and skills and revel in the striking vistas anywhere you look. With an experienced guide by your side, you’re guaranteed to learn something new and become a more proficient ski mountaineer! The ascent and descent options include Avalanche Gulch, West Face, Brewer Creek, and Clear Creek.

Trip Highlights

Itinerary

2-day Ski Mountaineering Trip on Mount Shasta

Day 1: Get ready for the summit

At 8 am, you’ll meet your guide at the trailhead. Afer a quick gear check, the guide will review the plan for the day and discuss the route. If needed, last minute adjustments will be made. The guide will conduct a trailhead departure and beacon check. At 8:30 am you’ll start ascending and build a camp. At 12 pm, there will be a skills review. Prior experience is helpful, but your guide will provide a review of crampons, ice axe arrest and glacier rope travel. At 5 pm, you’ll review the plan for the following day with your guide, pack what you can to prepare and get to bed early to set yourselves up for an alpine start for the summit attempt.

A ski mountaineer climbing Mount Shasta

Day 2: Summit day

Upon waking up, your journey to the summit begins with an alpine start. Your guide will set the time based on the weather forecast. After that, it’s time for the summit attempt. This will be a long day, with over 4,000 ft (1,220 m) of elevation gain over various snow surfaces and steep slopes. Once you reach your high point, you’ll descend the route and ski on various locations with the best snow!
When you get back to the camp, you’ll pack up your bags and descend to the trailhead. The goal is to be down by early afternoon.

Ski Mountaineer approaching the summit on Mount Shasta

 

3-day Ski Mountaineering Trip on Mount Shasta

Day 1: Get ready for the summit

Meet your guide at the trailhead at 8 am. The guide will carry out a quick gear check, review the plan for the day and discuss the route up to camp. If needed, last minute adjustments will be made. The guide will also conduct a trailhead departure check and beacon check.
At 8:30 am you’ll start ascending and build a camp. At 12 pm, your guide will conduct a skills review. While prior experience is helpful, your guide will provide a review of crampons, ice axe arrest and glacier rope travel, which will be a great opportunity to develop your ski mountaineering skills even further. At 5 pm, you’ll review the plan for the following day with your guide, pack what you can, and get to bed early to set yourselves up for an alpine start for the summit attempt.

A skier in a camp on Mount Shasta

Day 2: Summit day

Your journey to the summit begins with an alpine start. Your guide will set the time based on the weather forecast and you’ll begin the summit attempt. This will be a long day, with over 4,000 ft (1,220 m) of elevation gain over various snow surfaces and steep slopes. Once you reach your high point, you’ll descend the route and ski on various locations with the best snow! Set up a camp and prepare for the last day of your adventure.

A ski mountaineer near the summit of Mount Shasta

Day 3: Descend to trailhead

On the last day of your adventure, you’ll pack up your bags and start descending to the trailhead. The goal is to be down by early afternoon. Enjoy the unforgettable views in the process and have tons of fun while descending down this imposing stratovolcano.

A ski mountaineer going downhill on Mount shasta

 

Reviews

Reviews (1)

Amazing guide service
Corey R. about Blackbird Guides on TripAdvisor

Blackbird Mountain Guides is an amazing guide service! They tailor trips based on your individual preferences and abilities and are eager to help you develop new skill sets. The guides have extensive subject matter expertise and are extremely professional. I have done numerous climbs with Zeb specifically, including a recent trip a few weeks back – it was (as always) thoroughly enjoyable. There is a reason I keep coming back and climbing with Zeb – you always know you are in the best possible hands. Based on my past experiences, I am currently planning two more trips next year with Blackbird Mountain Guides. A top-notch company.

Things to know

Things to know

Covid measures in Mount Shasta

57hours is committed to providing safe outdoor adventure experiences. We require all guides using our platform to have a COVID-19 safety plan and to make the details of that plan accessible to travelers. In most cases, group sizes will be reduced, guides will avoid overcrowded locations, and other safety measures will be met depending on the location and activity.

We also expect clients to respect local regulations and take measures to protect themselves, guides and the communities they’re travelling to. For more information on COVID-19 measures in Mount Shasta, CA, please refer to the Official California State Government and Siskiyou County Public Health.

Please contact us if you have any questions or require further information. We are happy to provide you with the most up-to-date information!

What’s included?

What you get in this adventure:

    • An experienced, certified mountain guide with extensive knowledge of the area
    • 1, 2, or 3 days of ski mountaineering depending on your chosen itinerary
    • All group gear (tents, stove, fuel for stoves, ropes, wag bags, First Aid kit, snow pickets and rock protection)

What’s not included:

    • Technical backcountry ski touring equipment
    • Transportation
    • Accommodation
    • Food and snacks
    • Camping fees (up to $5 per tent)

How fit do I need to be?

In order to enjoy these ski mountaineering adventures, you need to be in great physical shape and have excellent endurance seeing as you’ll climb over 7,000 ft before descending this marvelous volcano. You need to be confident in various snow conditions and ready to implement efficient climbing techniques.The ascent to this peak poses a serious challenge, especially on a 1-day trip where you’ll summit the mountain in one single and continuous push. You need to be able to move quickly for thousands of feet and many hours. While attempting the summit is easier over 2 or 3 days, it is still quite strenuous. Don’t forget that you need to be able to carry a heavy pack while summiting this colossal volcanic mountain that lies ahead of you.

What if I’ve never ski mountaineered before?

These ski mountaineering trips to Mt. Shasta are intended for intermediate and advanced ski mountaineers and the participants are expected to have prior experience and knowledge when it comes to using an ice axe and crampons, as well as possess rope skills. This is a fast-paced adventure, but your guide will make sure to provide a quick refresher on these prerequisite skills so that you can experience this volcanic peak the right way.

What equipment do I need to bring?

All of the group gear for the trip will be provided by your guiding service and it includes tents, stove, fuel for stoves, ropes, wag bags, First Aid kit, snow pickets and rock protection.

For technical backcountry ski touring gear, you will need to bring:

    • Alpine touring skis or splitboard with skins (can be rented)
    • Touring boots and poles (can be rented)
    • Ski crampons and strap
    • Avalanche safety equipment (can be rented):
      • Digital, 3-antenna avalanche transceiver or beacon
      • Lightweight snow shovel
      • Avalanche probe
    • Lightweight ice axe (can be rented)
    • Crampons (steel or aluminium) (can be rented)
    • Climbing/ski helmet
    • Harness with two locking carabiners, a triple action locking carabiner, and belay device
    • Double length sling

For personal items, we recommend bringing:

    • Sun hat
    • Sunglasses
    • Goggles
    • Warm hat
    • Light to midweight neck gaiters, buff or your favorite face masks
    • Lightweight, synthetic/wool long sleeve base layer
    • 2 light to midweight insulating top layers
    • Midweight down or synthetic puffy with hood
    • Waterproof, light, hardshell jacket (Gore-Tex recommended)
    • Light gloves and midweight gloves
    • Synthetic or wool base layers, underwear and socks
    • Breathable, weather resistant softshell ski pants
    • Vented hardshell ski pants
    • Four Seasons sleeping bag rated 0F-20F
    • Insulated inflatable sleeping pad
    • Compression stuff sack (to pack sleeping bag)
    • Backpack large enough to carry all items listed (around a 50L backpack)
    • Freeze fried or “just-add-hot-water” meal for each morning and night in the field
    • Thermos with a warm beverage
    • Hard sided water bottle
    • Soft water bottle 1.5L – flexible water bladder
    • Water treatment or filtration
    • Bowl and long handled spoon
    • Snacks and food you can eat on-the-go
    • Toiletries (sunscreen, lip balm with SPF, hand sanitizer, toilet paper, etc.)
    • Headlamp with fresh batteries
    • Chemical hand warmers

Can I rent equipment?

All mandatory gear can be rented if you don’t have your own. You can rent:

    • Avalanche safety pack, including backpack, beacon, shovel and probe from your guides or Gear Delivery Service
    • Alpine touring skis, touring boots and poles as well as splitboards can be rented from your guides or Gear Delivery Service.

Ski rental locations are in Truckee and should be picked up the night prior to your outing. If you need to rent gear, let us know and we can help make arrangements.

Group sizes and age requirements

Group sizes:

    • For the Full-Day Ski Mountaineering Trip on Mount Shasta, the max. client-to-guide ratio is 2:1
    • For the 2- and 3-day Ski Mountaineering Trips on Mount Shasta, the max. client-to-guide ratio is 3:1.
    • Costs per person decrease as the group grows for these private adventures, so it’s the perfect opportunity to climb with friends and family!

Ski mountaineering in Mt. Shasta can be arranged for larger groups. Contact us to make arrangements.

Min. age requirements:

    • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
    • Minors may be permitted to join private tours on a case-by-case basis.

If your group has skiers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

Getting there and meeting location

To get to Mt. Shasta, most people fly into Rogue Valley International, only 1.5 hours away from the town of Mount Shasta. From there, you can rent a car or take a bus to get to the town. The closest airport, however, is Redding Municipal Airport, just an hour away. Some bigger airports include Sacramento International Airport and Reno-Tahoe International Airport, about 4 hours away.

Once you and your guide agree on the details of your itinerary, you’ll meet your guide at the trailhead. From there, you’ll head to your tour. The guide will choose the appropriate terrain dependent on conditions and the ski ability of the group.

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Wired for a better world

Outdoor adventuring makes us fall in love with our planet and people, it gets our brains rewired differently and forces us to rethink our life priorities.

For years, we’ve dreamt of building a company that can make an impact on things that we deeply care about. Here are some initiatives we are grateful to be contributing to.

1% of our sales goes to environmental non-profits
We provide work to thousands of local guides worldwide
We operate on carbon neutral and renewable energy
1% for the education and diversity in guiding
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