Ahjumawi (Ah-joo-MAH-wee), also transliterated Achomawi, is the name of one of the 11 bands of the Pit River Tribe of native Americans indigenous to the area. Their name translates to “where the waters come together.” Ahjumawi Lava Springs State Park is situated along the shores of Big Lake near the confluence of the Fall River (a major tributary of the Pit River) and Tule River, Ja-She Creek and Lava Creek. The park itself sits atop one of the largest systems of underground springs in the United States.
This is a special place where you can walk over fields of lava with views of snow-capped Mt. Shasta and Mt. Lassen in the distance. Freshwater springs flow out of lava, dotting the shoreline, and lava tubes, craters, caves and deep fissures are visible along the 20 miles of hiking trails. It is located in the Pacific Flyway, so it’s common to see migratory birds resting by the waterside or flying overhead, and mule deer, bald eagles, ospreys and great blue herons are known to reside in the area. The wilderness is extremely rugged and hikers are advised to be cautious.
WHERE: About 6 miles north of Fall River Mills. The park and hiking trails are only accessible by boat. There are no public roads to it and private motor vehicles are not permitted within the park. Boat access is through Big Lake’s PG&E boat launch known affectionately as “the Rat Farm.” (google map)
MORE INFO: www.parks.ca.gov