Glenn County High Point Trip Report

Black Butte (7,448 ft)

Date: October 10, 2003
Author: Peter Maurer

This highpoint was part of a long detour off Interstate 5, on a trip toward the Oregon Border. Driving directions in Suttle's book are accurate, and don't need to be repeated. The route, although turning to a gravel road halfway to the trail head, is well maintained and passable by any passenger car. The side road leading off of the main route to the trail head itself is a bit rough and it is a little confusing where the road ends and the trail begins.

Park at a split in the road (there is a faint turnaround there) and head up the left fork. Several 4-wheel drive vehicles and dirt bikes have tried to go further, but the road fades out in about a quarter mile and turns into a well-maintained trail. A steep but short hike leads to the summit, where several notebooks in a tin can serve as a register. The view was great, although winds in the Sacramento Valley stirred up a lot of dust from the agricultural operations, which lessened the visibility. Still, one could see Mt. Lassen to the northeast, the Sutter Buttes to the southeast, Snow Mountain to the south along the long line of coastal ridges, and Anthony Peak (my next stop - see the Mendocino County trip report) to the north.

After the descent and bagging Anthony Peak (Mendocino County), I continued north east on Forest Road M4, which eventually took me back out to I-5 at Corning. It made a nice loop trip and an interesting excursion for someone with an extra 5-6 hours (4 hours driving, 1 hiking) for someone plying the interstate through the Sacramento Valley. The roads are open from early summer (once the snows have been cleared from the pass) until late autumn.