Manzanita Lake Hike ~ Lassen Volcanic National Park

May 10th ~ Lassen Volcanic National Park

Entrance to Lassen Volcanic National Park

Our original plans went up in smoke due to late and abundant snowfall. Most of the park was still closed and the Bumpass Hell trail was down for the season due to replacing the boardwalk. We were open for a recommendation and the KOA park manager provided us with a solution. 

Manzanita Lake information

Taking the easy, and mostly flat, 1.8 mile hike around Manzanita Lake became our morning contingency plan.

Map of trail around the lake

I had wanted to try hiking poles for a long time, so just before we left on this trip I picked up an inexpensive set at Costco. They were really an “overkill” on this easy trail, but at least I got to learn some of the pros and cons of using them.

This stump provided us a sturdy bench.

Manzanita Creek flows directly into this relatively young lake. The lake was formed only about 350 years old. This is a catch and release fishing spot, beloved for the much larger (sometimes more than 20 inches) rainbow trout found here.

Manzanita Creek just before it flows into the lake

And the much smaller stream where it exits on the other side of the lake.

Manzanita Creek going out of the lake

We got to see a snow-covered Lassen Peak off in the distance and a shimmering reflection on the lake in front of us.

A variety of moss and flowers brightened our path. Even the manzanitas were in bloom.

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Wildlife was plentiful and we were fortunate to see chipmunks, nesting geese, ducks, blue jay, woodpeckers, deer and a grandiose bald eagle.

A large goose strolled unconcerned a few feet from us

With my camera, it is hard to tell that there is an eagle in the top of this tree

But, with Laura and Michael’s new camera with a 40x zoom, they were able to capture this magnificent creature in great detail.


As well as this cute chipmunk

Laura was on the hunt for the best photo angle

My guy simple soaking it all in as he patiently waits for me to catch up

And a few more random shots of the day:

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Sadly, this trip was about to come to an end. After an outing for lunch and a relaxing afternoon, we enjoyed our last evening in our RV and Michael and Laura in their cabin.

Up the next morning at 7:00, we repacked everything and headed south for the long drive back to Southern California. We had talked about splitting this leg up into two parcels, but everyone was anxious to get home and the guys were willing to keep on going.

We arrived back at our shop just before 9:00 pm. Laura and Michael had another couple of hours to make it on to Oceanside.

We all agreed it felt wonderful to sleep in our own beds that night!

GRATITUDE MOMENT: Today I am grateful that our two-week surprise trip was a huge success, even with a couple of minor roadblocks. Thank you to Laura and Michael for trusting us to plan and organize this journey. That is asking a lot of someone to say “join us for two weeks” and not tell them where you are going.

And also a hearty thank you to all of you who followed along with us. 

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About Tim and Joanne Joseph

Hi and welcome! We are Tim and Joanne Joseph and we have just embarked on our latest adventure. We hope you will join us!
This entry was posted in California, National Parks, RV Life, United States and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to Manzanita Lake Hike ~ Lassen Volcanic National Park

  1. When I first saw “Manzanita” I thought you were talking about Oregon – the tiny town on the coast is lovely but not the same Manzanita!


  2. Laura Urban says:

    Thank you to both of you for this awesome surprise two week trip! We know it took a lot of planning and preparation: We loved walking through a lot of your special childhood memories with you guys and meeting Jan & Mark for some of it too
    Love you both so very much ❤️❤️


  3. Terry says:

    Why is it always that the last day of the trip you are so excited to get back home. But I must agree sleeping in your own bed is magically restful no matter how good your accommodations have been.


  4. Love Lassen! Sorry to hear you couldn’t hike Bumpass Hell ~ it’s a beautiful hike. Looks like a return trip is in order someday! Thanks for sharing your trip, brought back good memories for me!


  5. What an excellent trip this turned out to be!



  6. vietnamtravelandculture says:

    Reblogged this on Vietnam Travel & Trade Portal .

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Maxxtrails says:

    It sounded like a great trip! I also purchased hiking poles from Costco a few years ago but found they just get in the way of my camera while hiking so I never use them.


  8. curvyroads says:

    What a great trip! I really enjoyed following along!


  9. Leah says:

    What a beautiful park! I had never heard of the Manzanita before. I’m so glad you were able to share a picture of it in bloom. It’s quite lovely.

    We’ve only just decided that we’ll be hooking up our RV and heading south this winter (I’m abandoning my boycott of Trump’s USA in deference to Karen’s desire to avoid flying for a year). I’ll be pouring over more of your posts for destination and hiking ideas!


  10. I recently visited Lassen and found it to be such a well kept secret, as far as Natl parks go. Manzanita lake was a highlight for me 😁


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