Cinder Cone

About Cinder Cone, Mineral

Cinder Cone is a cinder cone volcano in Lassen Volcanic National Park (located in Northern California in the United States). It is located about 10 miles (16 km) northeast of Lassen Peak and provides an excellent view of Brokeoff Mountain, Lassen Peak, and Chaos Crags. The cone was built to a height of 750 feet (230 m) above the surrounding area and spread ash over 30 square miles (78 km2). Then, like many cinder cones, it was snuffed out when several basalt lava flows erupted from its base. These flows, called the Fantastic Lava Beds, spread northeast and southwest, and dammed creeks, first creating Snag Lake on the south and then Butte Lake to the north. Butte Lake is fed by water from Snag Lake seeping through the lava beds. Nobles Emigrant Trail goes around Snag Lake and follows the edge of the lava beds. Its age has been controversial since the 1870s, when many people thought it was only a few decades old. Later, the cone and associated lava flows were thought to have formed about 1700 or during a 300-year- long series of eruptions ending in 1851. Recent studies by U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists, working in cooperation with the National Park Service to better understand volcano hazards in the Lassen area, have firmly established that Cinder Cone was formed during two eruptions that occurred in the 1650s.

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Overview of Cinder Cone

Walking past the city of Mineral, you will come across Cinder Cone. On your trip to Mineral, you can consider a quick visit to Cinder Cone. Use this comprehensive guide to plan your visit to Cinder Cone and you'll thank us later!

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  • Hike up the cinder cone is a little challenging as it has loose gravel. But it has good views once you get to the top.

  • Short hike to quite a few amazing views. The hike up to the top of the Cinder Cone is a good one. Wear sturdy hiking shoes and pace yourself. Once at the top it is fairly flat around the rim of the crater which affords views of the Painted Dunes, Fantastic Lava Beds and Butte Lake. The crater is pretty cool and it's a relatively short hike down to the bottom where all you can see is the sky above and the crater walls around you.

  • One of my favorite places I've been to. Easy hike to the base of Cinder Cone from Butte Lake Campground. The hike up Cinder Cone is challenging, like climbing a vertical sandbox. The views are spectacular and well worth the hike. From the top of Cinder Cone you can view the Painted Dunes and Lassen. Make sure to take the long way back down, there's a trail that is hard to find which winds its way down the backside with awesome views of the Painted Dunes.

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