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It Hasta Be Shasta: Trinity Scenic Byway

Lewiston Bridge (10/19/17) Jeri Rangel

Another of the areas Near Peak to Peaking in the Shasta Cascade region is Trinity County.

Shasta Cascade color spotter Jeri Rangel traveled the Trinity Heritage Scenic Byway (CA-3) , yesterday, including scoring a First Report for Lewiston, which requires a detour (Trinity Dam Blvd.) from the route.

From Redding, head west on CA-299 toward Weaverville (great color, plus a fascinating historic downtown and Joss House State Historic Park – all worth seeing). Trinity Dam Blvd. is a couple of miles before the turn north onto the scenic byway (CA-3).

Her route along the scenic byway traveled north from Weaverville on Hwy 3, past Trinity Lake, Trinity Center, the Trinity Alps and Etna, Scott Valley, the Marble Mountains and Ft. Jones, finding “fabulous” fall colors that have “popped out brightly all over and just about at the same time!”

She estimates that the route is at full peak, though this is an area that should stay good through early November.

Trinity Heritage Scenic Byway, CA-3 – Near Peak (50-75%) GO NOW!

Dogwood, Norwegian Area, North Trinity Lake (10/19/17) Jeri Rangel

Scott Mountain, CA-3 (10/19/17) Jeri Rangel

Coffee Creek Rd., CA-3 (10/19/17) Jeri Rangel

Dogwood, CA-3 (10/19/17) Jeri Rangel

Trinity Center, CA-3 (10/19/17) Jeri Rangel

Trinity Alps Wilderness (10/18/17) Larry Leigh

Etna, Scott Valley (10/19/17) Jeri Rangel



Shasta Cascade A Harvest of Events

Mt. Shasta, Upper Sacramento River (10/21/16) Philip Reedy

Patchy color is appearing early across the Shasta Cascade, providing opportunities to harvest an autumn drive with a car show, road race, trout derby and all sorts of festivals (music, food, and fun). Here are some of the events that will be happening up north on this coming and the following weekend.

Oct. 6

– Olive Festival, Corning Car Show


Oct. 7  

– Bizz Johnson Marathon  ( Susanville)

– Harvest Moon Liberty Fest ( Anderson River Park )

– Johnny Appleseed Days . ( Paradise )

– Manton Apple Festival ( Manton )

– Salmon Festival (Weaverville)


Oct. 14 

– Apple Harvest Festival . ( Mc Cloud) .

– Shasta Lake Trout Derby


Highway to Heaven

Dogwood, Hwy 3 (10/31/16) Jeri Rangel

Dogwood, Hwy 3 (10/31/16) Jeri Rangel

Stuart Fork, Trinity Alps Resort (10/31/16) Jeri Rangel

Stuart Fork, Trinity Alps Resort (10/31/16) Jeri Rangel

Dogwood, Rush Creek, Lewiston (10/31/16) Jeri Rangel

Dogwood, Rush Creek, Lewiston (10/31/16) Jeri Rangel

Coffee Creek, Hwy 3 (10/31/16) Jeri Rangel

Coffee Creek, Hwy 3 (10/31/16) Jeri Rangel

Dogwood, Hwy 3 (10/31/16) Jeri Rangel

Dogwood, Hwy 3 (10/31/16) Jeri Rangel

Hwy 3 (10/31/16) Jeri Rangel

Hwy 3 (10/31/16) Jeri Rangel

Driving CA-3 north from Weaverville past Trinity Lake and the Trinity Alps at this time of year, you truly are on a highway to heaven.

Bold color fills the forest. In places, it is a virtual corridor of autumn drama.

Color spotter Jeri Rangel traveled the route this week, returning with these images of dogwood blushing in the woods and bigleaf maple, vine maple, cottonwood, alder, aspen, chokecherry and oaks lighting streams, forests and roads with autumn color.

California State Highway 3 – Peak (75-100%) GO NOW!


Holy Trinity!

Weaverville (11/10/15) Jeri Rangel

Weaverville (11/10/15) Jeri Rangel

Trinity County color spotter Jeri Rangel sent us back to church to ask for forgiveness for announcing, earlier this week,that Trinity County was almost past peak.

Mea culpa! As is evident in Jeri’s pictures, Weaverville is Peaking, with gorgeous color along CA-299.

Founded in 1850 during the California Gold Rush, Weaverville is the county seat and a fascinating town to visit.

Weaverville’s Joss House whose official name is “The Temple of the Forest Beneath the Clouds,” is a remarkable Taoist temple and California’s best-preserved example of a gold rush era Chinese place of worship, with its beautiful interior and intricately carved altar.

Weaverville (11/10/15) Jeri Rangel

Weaverville (11/10/15) Jeri Rangel

An unusual aspect of this 19th century town is its exterior circular staircases, so built to avoid higher property taxes assessed for interior stairs during the 1800s. They add quirky charm to this fascinating town.

Weaverville is prime to visit and peaking.  GO NOW!

Peak (75-100%) GO NOW! – Weaverville


Shasta Cascade – Peaking Everywhere

Black oak, Plumas County (10/30/13) Jeff Titcomb

Black oak, Plumas County (10/30/13) Jeff Titcomb

With this past week’s storm stripping many trees above 5,000′ in elevation, California’s Fall Color has moved down to mid and lower elevations.

GO NOW – 75 – 100% – Trinity County – Bordering on being past peak, Trinity County is at full peak along CA-299 near Weaverville with bigleaf maple, dogwood, mountain ash and exotic Chinese pistache coloring up this fascinating lumber and gold rush era town.  While there, be sure to include a visit to the Josh House Chinese temple, which is one of the most amazing and beautiful historic structures in the state.  Weaverville was, historically, a site of the Tong Wars, though locals quickly settled the dispute and established a climate of acceptance and welcome that continues today.

Indian Head, Plumas County (10/30/13) Jeff Titcomb

Indian Head, Plumas County (10/30/13) Jeff Titcomb

Past Peak – Plumas County – Snow has fallen to the 4,600′ elevation, taking most of the leaves with it. There is still color to be seen in the Greenville area with dogwood, bigleaf maple, and oak all at or just beyond peak.  The combination of the last of autumn’s fall color beside a dusting of fresh white snow, makes for great viewing.

GO NOW! – 50 – 75% – Tehama County – It has taken a while, though Tehama County is finally approaching peak. As we have seen so far this year, there’s lots of red and orange appearing with bigleaf maple and various species of California oaks exhibiting amber and Sienna.

GO NOW – 50 – 75% – Shasta County – Shasta County is just below peak this week. The oaks are halfway there, with a lovely mix of green, yellow to amber color with some burnt Sienna and brown. California bigleaf maples are at full peak with bright red, orange and still some yellow. There has been a noticeable change to far northern California’s weather pattern with days now considerably cooler. Local color spotter Grace Smith advises to go now, as all areas of Shasta County should peak within the week.  Top places to see the color are along the 16-mile Sacramento River Trail (a National Recreation Trail), McConnell Arboretum and Gardens at Turtle Bay, Whiskeytown National Recreation Area, Shasta Lake, and Anderson River Park where the NovemBeer Festival will occur on Nov. 2.  CLICK HERE for more about it.

CSU Chico (10/31/13) Stephany Fernadez

CSU Chico (10/31/13) Stephany Fernadez

Chinese pistache, CSU Chico (10/31/13) Stephany Fernadez

Chinese pistache, CSU Chico (10/31/13) Stephany Fernadez

GO NOW! – 50 – 75% – Butte County – Chico is a conundrum.  While many trees have not yet turned, others are shedding their leaves.  This occurs because of the wide variety of trees to be seen in this, one of California’s cities of trees.  Species tend to turn around the same time and because Chico has so many exotic species along its boulevards and on the campus of Chico State, at Bidwell Park, in its orchards and in surrounding wild areas, the change occurs over a longer period.  Many trees are still showing lime green, though others are bright yellow, orange and red, such as the exotic Chinese pistache, pictured here.

Top places to see the color include Bidwell Park, Chico State University, the Hwy 32 Corridor, the Hwy 99 Corridor, Esplanade Ave, Manzanita Ave., and Mangrove Ave.  For fascinating side trips, visit an 800-year-old gothic monastery chapter house rebuilt at the Abbey of New Clairvaux, roughly 10 miles north of Chico in Vina, and in Chico: Orient and Flume Art Glass where glass blowers create art, numerous quality art galleries and Sierra Nevada Brewery known for its excellent tour and restaurant.


As Autumn Approaches, Shasta Cascade Reports

With the first day of autumn approaching (Friday, Sept. 23), few reports received yet include significant measurements of fall color anywhere in California.  Yesterday, Leilani, a color spotter from the Shasta Cascade region (northeast California) reported:

0-15% – Butte County – The colors in Butte County are not expected to change much until closer to the end of the month.  The area has been experiencing unseasonably warm weather.

Sundial Bridge (11/4/2009) © 2009 John Poimiroo

0-15% – Redding – Nothing yet to report, but plan to visit in early October to see the riparian vegetation and oaks along the banks of the Sacramento River framing Sundial Bridge with shades of yellow, orange and burnt sienna.

0-15% – Whiskeytown National Recreation Area- The national park is not experiencing any fall color changes, as yet.

0-15% – MacArthur-Burney Falls Memorial State Park– The Vine Maples at the bottom of the falls at Burney Creek are just beginning to turn.

0-15% – Lassen Volcanic National Park–  Neither upper elevations at the park or Manzanita Lake are experiencing any foliage change yet.

0-15% – Bizz Johnson National Recreation Trail-   Colors along The Bizz Johnson Trail in Lassen County are not expected to change until the middle of October.

0-15% – Lassen National Forest – The national forest will most likely not experience fall color changes until early October.

0-15% – Modoc National Forest – No color changes yet in Modoc County, but conditions are perfect for spectacular fall color, as the nights are starting to turn pretty cold, with warm days meaning that as the days shorten, the beginning of color change is expected in the next week or so.

0-15% – Mt. Shasta – California’s beautiful northern volcano, Mt Shasta, is not yet surrounded by fall color.

0-15% – Weaverville – Trinity County surrounding this fascinating gold rush era town along CA-299 has not yet seen any fall color.  Last year, we reported very lovely color along 299 and in the area.  Look to the middle of October for the color to truly swirl here.

0 – 15% – Plumas County – One of California’s premiere places to see fall color, Plumas County always delivers wonderful fall color and 2011 should be no change.  Area botanists are saying the colors are expected to be spectacular this season thanks to all the rain Plumas County has had throughout the year. Our dear friends at the Plumas County Chamber of Commerce will be posting to their fall webpage starting on Friday (Sept. 23).  Their reports feature local and visitor testimonies and pictures from all parts of this colorful destination.  Keep checking here for their reports, as well.  The Chester/Lake Almanor Chamber of Commerce in Chester stocks copies of a guide to regional fall color drives, many of which are on state and national scenic byways.