LAKE COUNTY, Calif. – Mount Konocti docents are planning to lead a hike to the top of the mountain on Saturday, Nov. 24.
The guided hike will begin at 8:30 a.m. and take approximately four hours.
The hike is moderately strenuous and will cover approximately six miles roundtrip. Participants are encouraged to wear sturdy shoes appropriate for rugged terrain and to bring a lunch, a supply of water, a daypack, as well as binoculars and/or a camera.
The number of spaces for the docent-led hike is limited, and reservations are required. Minors must be accompanied by a responsible adult. Inclement weather cancels the hike.
The hike, which will be led by docents Val Nixon and Mike Riley, will include a visit to the historic Downen Cabin and the top of Wright Peak, with an optional climb to the top of the Cal Fire lookout tower.
At 4,299 feet in elevation, Wright Peak is the highest point on the mountain, and the tower, which was built in 1976 and used until recently by fire lookout crews, provides stunning 360-degree panoramas.
The climb to the top of the tower requires accompaniment by a guided docent, and it will be accessible only to those 18 years of age and older.
Tower access requires a moderately strenuous climb up several flights of exterior stairs, and thus, may not be appropriate for those prone to vertigo or with heart-related and other health conditions.
Tom Nixon, a retired State Parks Ranger and member of the Konocti Regional Trails Team (KRTT), champions the docent tour program, which includes docent-led hikes of the mountain as well as a bus tour pilot project.
The docents have been trained and are knowledgeable about a range of topics including the mountain and its geology, history, flora, fauna and even folklore.
Mount Konocti County Park is an undeveloped park with somewhat rugged terrain and gravel areas. Three waterless vault restrooms have been installed on the mountain, as well as several picnic tables and benches. Smoking is strictly prohibited.
As with other county-owned parks, glass and alcohol are prohibited. Rattlesnakes are present, and care should be taken to avoid disturbing rocks.
In its monumental 2011 acquisition, the county of Lake purchased 1,520 acres of land on top of Mount Konocti, thereby creating the new Mount Konocti County Park and placing it into public hands for perpetuity.
The county-owned land is contiguous with an existing 821 acres of public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management.
The reservation deadline for the guided hike is Nov. 14.
To reserve a space, contact the Lake County Public Services Department at 707-262-1618.
For information on Mount Konocti County Park, including a downloadable map, visit www.konoctitrails.com .