Colusa County Highpoint Trip Report

Snow Mountain East

Date: June 6, 2004
Author: John Garner

Very nice hike, good views. It was COLD for June - at the summit it was 39 degrees, at 6 PM, expecting heat and snakes on a hike between 5,000 and 7,000 feet in June. Instead, it's near freezing with a 30 mph wind. Access not as complicated as in Suttle's book, but takes a while with long sections of winding roads.

Access: Take I-5 North of Sacramento to Maxwell exit (approximately 70 miles north of Sacramento). Set odometer to zero.

  0.0 Turn left (west) on Maxwell Road.
10.0 Turn right (north) at dead end, onto Sites-Lodoga Road.
24.1 Turn right (north) onto Lodoga-Stonyford Road.
31.7 In town of Stonyford, turn left at stop sign on Market/Fouts Springs Road.
32.0 Turn left onto Fouts Springs Road, also signed as FR-M10.
        Stay on M10 at all junctions until 55.6 miles from I-5; at four-way junction there,
        stay straight toward signed "Snow Mountain".
57.3 Turnaround at trailhead with restroom building.

The forest road is paved for about the first 13 miles, then gravel/dirt the rest of the way. Plan on at least two hours from I-5 to the trailhead.

Hike: Take trail past restroom, through small campground to signboard. Trail splits at signboard, go left. Trail is generally easy to follow and is signed where major trails intersect. Gradient is moderate for the most part, and tread is mostly good. Several nice camping areas enroute, especially about halfway, where a small pond and a level area are found.

Stay on the signed trail all the way to the saddle between Snow Mountain East and Snow Mountain West, and turn right to the top of Snow Mountain East. The trail dies part way up to the top but just press on a couple of hundred feet. CAC register is in rocks on north side of summit - appears to be the Lake CoHP; large rock outcrop on south side of summit appears to be the Colusa CoHP.

Hike statistics: 8.2 miles round trip, total elevation gain about 2,000 feet.
Time up was 2:30, time down was 1:45 .

Total round trip time from Sacramento is at least 10 hours. Total time from San Fransisco is at least 14 hours.

If you can start early, you can combine these with the Mendocino and Glenn CoHPs.