By Eileen Majors
Susanville Ranch Park Trail photo (left) by Joel Rathje

Photos by Joel Rathje

[/media-credit] Photos by Joel Rathje

While Lassen County planners pursue big plans for a proposed year-round Susanville Volcanic Hot Springs, utilizing geothermally heated water, hiking and bicycling enthusiasts continue to head for their trails. The Susanville Ranch Park Trails, a past project of the county’s, indicate good signs for hopes of a new pool. The Susanville Ranch Park Trail System will take you through gorgeous meadows, along beautiful creekbeds in the coolness of the forest and will give you great choices for a stop along the trail. I thoroughly enjoyed the hike. We took our shoes off and sat for our picnic, where we could enjoy the sounds of Paiute Creek and admire a few small waterfalls in our view. 22 miles of trails include gentle grades around the meadows and up Paiute Creek Canyon. More challenging trails are on Coyote Bluff and on the Horse Trail in the southern portion of the park. Views are amazing in every season and you can see many of them for yourself online, thanks to Joel Rathje, Lassen County’s Trail Coordinator and local photographer. You will also find great reviews on the trail system, which has been developed by Rathje. Trail information can be found at or by calling Public Works at 530-251-8288.
Another good thing about hiking and bicycling in Lassen County is the historic Bizz Johnson Trail, once the old Fernely-Lassen Railroad. This Rails to Trails Conversion once carried Westwood’s Paul Bunyan Pine around the country during the hey days of this old logging town situated on the far end of the trail, 23 miles from Susanville. The Bizz Johnson Trail is managed by BLM and information can be found at