Modoc Lava Beds

  • Easy (Stronghold and Mushpot Cave)
  • 0.9-mile total (for both short hikes)
  • 100 feet elevation gain
  • Open all year
  • Use: hikers

  • Moderate (3 other interesting trails)
  • 6.4 miles total
  • 770 feet elevation gain

Riddled with lava caves, this volcanic landscape in Northern California was the setting for one of the West’s most famous battles, where a defiant band of 52 Modoc men held off up to a thousand US Army troops for five months in 1872-73. Today hiking trails tour the Lava Beds National Monument’s geologic and historic sites. If you’re short on time, hike the 0.7-mile loop to Captain Jack’s Stronghold and explore the visitor center’s Mushpot Cave. Otherwise spend the night at the campground and hike three slightly longer trails. Pets are banned on trails.

To drive here from Klamath Falls …

For the final recommended hike, return …

This chapter taken from the book 100 Hikes/Travel Guide: Eastern Oregon.