Driving Tour: Hwy 89 Mt. Shasta to McCloud

by Shasta Cascade on July 24, 2009

If you’re in the Mt. Shasta area, and intend on visiting the Mt. Shasta ski park or McCloud, you’ll have to travel on Highway 89.

Highway 89 is a windy two lane road with a great deal of elevation change. Most of the road is lined with pine trees and surrounded by hills, further limiting visibility.

The drive from Mt. Shasta to Snowman Summit (4.5 miles) heading east is an uphill climb. The ski park is located just off Highway 89 on the Ski Park Highway, about four miles from Mt. Shasta. (CalTrans has a road camera at Snowman Summit here: http://www.dot.ca.gov/dist2/rwis/sm_snowman.php

The drive from Snowman Summit to McCloud is downhill heading east. McCloud is located 9.5 miles from Mt. Shasta, and the 89 highway goes through the near center of town. The drive east of McCloud is fairly level for 30 miles.

Be extremely cautious driving on this road because deer are very common. Less common are bear, but they still pose a hazard: a car hit a bear on Hwy 89 during early July. The car was totaled, and the bear was killed by the impact. Other sightings of bears running across the freeway between traffic have been reported.

During wintertime, CalTrans does an excellent job of keeping the freeway plowed free of snow. However, even when the road has been plowed, ice can still be present on the road. Highway 89 is notorious for car wrecks during winter caused by people driving too fast for conditions.

Be sure to drive safe!

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