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Old March 26th, 2009, 04:37 PM   #1
RaisedOnPorsches
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Thumbs up 2009 Mount Lassen Weekend Getaway Drive!

I've decided to start up a new thread for this since I don't want to hijack Dede's thread...

Here is the skinny. I have an itch to visit the Lassen Volcanic National Park. As beautiful as Yosemite and Lake Tahoe are, there are plenty of other BEAUTIFUL areas in this state to enjoy as well. In addition to natural beauty the Lassen park area looks to have some wonderfully twisty roads to enjoy as well!

I am thinking this will be either a 2 or 3 day trip. While the driving can easily be fit into two days, the third day would allow us to explore and appreciate the park land much more. Lodging up at Lassen would ideally be at the Drakesbad Guest Ranch, but availability is limited so we have to act fast!


The lodge itself is 17 miles (3 miles of which are dirt road) from Chester inside of the park. The trip in total will be close to 600 miles of road (250 miles on twisty back roads). CLICK HERE FOR A ROUTE MAP.

Lodging rates vary slightly depending upon season and room type. It would cost approximately $160 per person per night (including three meals per night) to stay at this lodge. The rooms are simple and sparse (no wall sockets etc). They do have a swimming pool heated naturally by the neighboring sulfur springs, evening campfires, and lots of good (easy) hiking/riding trails near to the lodge as well.

I imagine the cost for additional meals on route will be approximately $50 per person. The total trip cost will be around $210 per person (for 2 days) or $370 per person (for 3 days) PLUS GAS.

As I mentioned before the lodge books up fast! Currently they have the following Saturdays available (I will update with info about adjoining Friday/Sundays when I hear back from them):
  • June 6th (06/06/09)
  • June 13th (06/13/09)
  • August 1st (08/01/09)
  • September 19th (09/19/09)
  • September 26th (09/26/09)

Personally I'm leaning towards August 1st since there will be minimal road issues due to snow by then (June can have snow pack in the park).

For those who are interested please respond with the following preferences:
  1. 2 or 3 day trip?

  2. Which dates/month works best?

  3. How many people would be coming with you?
    Friends/family are welcome, but keep in mind you'll want to be in a vehicle that you enjoy driving.
I will update this thread as I get feedback from you and the folks at Drakesbad. I would like to be reserving rooms by mid-April if not sooner.

Thanks,
-Jeremy
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Old March 26th, 2009, 10:25 PM   #2
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No way on gods green earth would my wife stay there. I don't do dirt roads except in my truck.
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Old March 27th, 2009, 12:02 AM   #3
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This is Jeremy's first attempt of organizing a trip. I think he put together a great idea for all of us Babblers to consider. That area up in Lassen is great and if anybody is interested I am sure there are many other options on places to stay.

Nothing is firm at the moment....he is asking for some feedback. Just talk it out...
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Last edited by dedes; March 27th, 2009 at 01:00 AM.
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Old March 27th, 2009, 05:43 AM   #4
Tom M
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Because of the Boxster group I would probably recommend staying someplace like Chester. Save the dirt roads for the camping crowd
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Old March 27th, 2009, 10:21 AM   #5
RaisedOnPorsches
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Lightbulb

Alright here are some updated thoughts. I'm not surprised if the Drakesbad Guest Ranch is a little too "rustic" for everyone's taste. This trip would have to be a 3-day event if we were not staying in the park. It probably should be three days regardless. There are other options available.

There are two decently reviewed motels in Chester along with a nice looking B&B. The Bidwell House Inn B&B would probably be our most comfortable option up there (jacuzzi tubs, king size beds, etc).

I checked their online reservation calendar. I get the general vibe that June is too early for folks and two questionable weather wise. July seems to be a very popular month for visits. The B&B does have the majority of their rooms open on the weekend of July 24th-26th. The room rates are cheaper than Drakesbad although fewer meals are included. Bidwell offers AAA discounts as well. (I will inquire about group rates). This weekend also happens to have the "Art around the Lake" event taking place as well. Chester, CA is located on Lake Almanor FYI.

To get to the park it is about a 30 mile drive from Chester. There is a main drive through the park that will certainly be open by July. Spending the second day driving the loop of the park, stopping for photos, picnic luncheon, and such would be quite nice. It will take the better part of a day to do this.

In Summary:
  • Proposed Length: 3-Day Event

  • Proposed weekend: July 24-26th (staying two nights at the Bidwell House Inn B&B)

  • Proposed Plan:

    1. Day 1 (Friday, July 24th): Drive from Bay Area to Chester with lunch stop in Red Bluff. (Approximately 5 hours drive & 250 miles).

    2. Day 2 (Saturday, July 25th): Drive from Chester into the park. See the sights, picnic, photograph, and enjoy the setting. Return to Chester in the evening and explore the town. (Approximately 3 hours drive & 120 miles).

    3. Day 3 (Sunday, July 26th): Leave Chester heading SW on Route 89, connect to Route 70, and drive to Oroville, CA (Approximately 3 hours & 110 miles). Enjoy lunch in the Gold Country then drive home. Expect to arrive in the Bay Area late afternoon/early evening. (Approximately 3 more hours & 150 miles).
REVISED ROUTE MAP

Cost Estimate: ~$290/couple for lodging + meals + gas + film


Everything is still very flexible and open to discussion. July isn't the only month, but I'm wary about scheduling in August due to the Monterey Historics also happening that month.

Thoughts? As Dede has pointed out this is my first time coordinating a driving event. I am open to any and all suggestions and I wont take offense.

-J
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Old March 27th, 2009, 11:35 AM   #6
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That would be a great drive after you get off Hiway 5 at Red Bluff. You might check for other conflicting activities for whatever dates you choose. The Chester/Lake Almanor area gets real busy during the summer with a Rodeo and car shows etc.. The Lake draws many people into the motels also. There is time for more discussion.

Thanks George
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Old March 27th, 2009, 12:26 PM   #7
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http://www.minerallodge.com/motel

Have'nt been here in a long time but you might want to check it out.

George
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Old March 27th, 2009, 12:44 PM   #8
RaisedOnPorsches
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Thanks for the tip George. Mineral would be closer to the park and those motel rooms are priced right (about half the cost of the B&B in Chester). It guess it will depend upon how many folks are interested and what their budget looks like. Cheaper usually is better.
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