Our next destination was just outside of Montague, Ca north of Mt. Shasta. Hans had spent some time going to college in Weed, Ca. His good friends family has a ranch up there. We were going to revisit one of the haunts of his youth. He had not been there in 30 years.
He didn't know if there would be anyone there or not, and when we pulled up we were greeted by the caretakers. There is a creek on the property, Bogus Creek. This creek comes off of the Klamath River just before the Iron Gate dam. At this point spawning Chinook salmon can no longer follow the Klamath past the dam, and they continue up the Bogus. We walked down to see if there were any to be seen. In a pool between two rapids we were able to count about four. It was strange to see such a big fish in a small creek.
Hans wanted to show me another spot on the property. There is a smaller creek that is dry this time of year, but has a waterfall when it is running. We hiked back to it once again in our riding pants and boots. It was a beautiful spot. A 40 foot lava rock cliff drops into a shallow pool. It was wonderfully cool down there. I would love to see it when the water is running. There were two ways out, back the way we came down the creek bed, or climb up the side and shortcut across the field. Up we went. Side note, these-
are not climbing boots. The climb wasn't hard, and hardly treacherous. I am not sure what the bigger threat was, the loose rock and consequential fall, or the poison oak. Those boots! I know one day I will love 'em, but not this day. We walked across the field of star thistle (yay kevlar pants!), bid our farewell, and rode to Montague.
Checking the map we chose to take Ball Mountain Road over to 97 and on over to Lava Beds National Monument. How is Ball Mountain Road? I was dubious. Hans said he remembered taking this route in a pickup truck, it's no problem. As we turned onto the road there was a warning about trailers and passenger vehicles. Passenger vehicles, really? Is this going to be ok for the Beemers clutch? About four miles in I remembered a route that I had been looking at during the planning stages of this trip. Allycatdad had a route posted that he made a change to because of the sand. This is pretty close to that area. Please.... no sand.