Ahjumawi Lava Springs
Brochure of Ahjumawi Lava Springs State Park (SP) in California. Published by California Department of Parks and Recreation.
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Ahjumawi Lava Springs State Park Our Mission The mission of California State Parks is to provide for the health, inspiration and education of the people of California by helping to preserve the state’s extraordinary biological diversity, protecting its most valued natural and cultural resources, and creating opportunities for high-quality outdoor recreation. Reachable only by shallow boat, Ahjumawi Lava Springs State Park is rich with brilliant turquoise bays and tiny, tree-studded islands California State Parks supports equal access. Prior to arrival, visitors with disabilities who need assistance should contact the park at (530) 335-2777. If you need this publication in an alternate format, contact firstname.lastname@example.org. CALIFORNIA STATE PARKS P.O. Box 942896 Sacramento, CA 94296-0001 For information call: (800) 777-0369 (916) 653-6995, outside the U.S. 711, TTY relay service www.parks.ca.gov Ahjumawi Lava Springs State Park N 41.1000° W 121.4120° c / o McArthur-Burney Falls Memorial SP 24898 Highway 89 Burney, CA 96013 (530) 335-2777 © 2012 California State Parks (Rev. 2016) lying off the shores of Horr Pond and Ja She Creek. R emote and wild, Ahjumawi Lava Springs State Park is the site of one of the nation’s largest systems of underwater springs. Big Lake, the Tule and Fall rivers, and the sparkling Ja She and Lava creeks all meet here in the Fall River Valley basin. At about 3,300 feet elevation, summers are usually hot and dry; temperatures range from 85 to 100 degrees. Evenings average 60 to 70 degrees. Winter months are cold and wet, with occasional snow. Average annual rainfall is 20 inches. park history The Ajumawi (Ah-joo-MAH-wee) people, for whom this park is named, are one of 11 autonomous bands of the federally recognized Pit River Tribe. The Ajumawi have remained in this area, calling this land home for thousands of years. Ajumawi and its spelling variations — Achomawi, Achumawi, and Ahjumawi — refer to the people who have occupied this area from pre-history to the present. English translations of Ajumawi vary from “river people” to “where the waters come together.” The Ajumawi people built rock fish traps near the shoreline that channeled fresh After Harry’s death in the 1960s, Ivy Horr wished to see the land and its resources preserved. In 1975, California State Parks acquired the acreage that is now the park, helped by a generous gift from Mrs. Horr. Stone fish traps near Crystal Springs campground spring water needed to attract trout and Sacramento sucker fish. The traps held the fish in a shallow place that allowed them to be caught while spawning in winter. Once the native people caught their self-imposed limit of fish, the traps functioned as protected spawning grounds, ensuring the successful reproduction of the next generation of fish. Today, descendants of the 11 bands making up the Pit River Tribe still live in an area known as “the hundred-mile square” in parts of Shasta, Siskiyou, Modoc, and Lassen counties. They are keeping their cultural traditions alive for future generations. By the 20th century, much of the former Ajumawi homeland in the Fall River Valley had been acquired by Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) to further electrical power development. In 1944, rancher and former lumberman Harry Horr and his wife Ivy purchased 6,000 acres from PG&E. The Horrs used the land for cattle grazing and leased it to hunting and fishing clubs. Natural history Ahjumawi Lava Springs State Park is located in the Fall River Valley basin. About two-thirds of the park’s 6,000 acres are blanketed with geologically recent (3,000 to 5,000 years old) lava flows from the Medicine Lake volcano to the north. Basaltic lava features include pit craters, pressure ridges, and small lava tubes. The park is bordered on the north by the Modoc Plateau, built by repeated eruptions and flows of basaltic lava. The plateau contains abundant air bubbles, lava tubes, and spaces that quickly capture, contain, and convey surface water, discharging about 1.2 billion gallons of water a day into springs that feed the valley’s lakes and streams. Plants and Animals The park sits near the border of the Modoc and Klamath / North Coast bioregions. Dominant plants include western juniper, bitterbrush, curl leaf, and birchleaf mountain mahogany, buckbrush ceanothus, Oregon white oak, and transitional hybrids between ponderosa and Jeffrey pine. The abundant spring water also invites great numbers of both resident and migratory bird species. Birds traveling the RECREATION The park is reachable only by a 2.5-mile paddle in your own shallow-draft boat (check for rentals in nearby communities). Camping — Three primitive camping areas sit near Ja She Creek, at Crystal Springs, and at the north shore of Horr Pond. To register, use the self-pay envelopes at each location. Boating — Explore waterways, pools, and lava flows from your canoe or kayak. Hiking — Twenty miles of trails vary from 1.5 miles to more than five miles long. Views along the way include Mount Shasta, Mount Lassen, and some Cascade Range peaks. Fishing — Licensed anglers will find good fishing spots at Ja She Creek, Horr Pond, Big Lake, and Crystal Springs. Hunting is strictly prohibited within the park boundaries, including waterways. For specific hunting and fishing license regulations, visit www.wildlife.ca.gov. Shasta crayfish Photo courtesy of Spring Rivers Ecological Sciences, LLC Pacific Flyway include Canada and snow geese as well as American white pelicans. Birders can see blue-winged teals, Lewis’s woodpeckers, and northern pygmy owls. Ospreys — one of the largest concentrations in California — nest in juniper trees, a situation unique to the park. Black-tailed deer herds spend winters here, and coyotes frequent the grasslands. Non-native muskrats can be seen in the marshes and water’s edges. Waterways host Sacramento suckers, largemouth bass, and both brown and rainbow trout. Native Species of Concern Bald eagles make their home here, attracted by abundant fish, small animals, and carrion. The indigenous Shasta crayfish is considered endangered by state and federal agencies. Only three inches long at maturity, Shasta crayfish numbers have diminished since the introduction of non-native crayfish species. The native crayfish have also lost habitat to dams and agricultural practices. ACCESSIBLE FEATURES The boat dock and restroom at Horr Pond primitive campground are accessible. The park’s lava terrain is uneven and rugged. For updates on accessibility, visit the website at http://access.parks.ca.gov. NEARBY STATE PARKs • McArthur-Burney Falls Memorial SP 24898 Highway 89 Burney 96013 (530) 335-2777 • Castle Crags State Park 20022 Castle Creek Road Castella 96017 (530) 235-2684 please remember • Expect extreme heat in summer and cold in winter. Weather here can change quickly; check forecasts before visiting. • Streams and waterways can be cold enough to cause hypothermia. • No potable water is available. Bring a filter or adequate water for your stay. • Life jackets are required for each boater. • Look out for rattlesnakes, which can blend into the dark-colored lava. • Stinging nettles, mosquitoes, and ticks are abundant. Use caution. • Lava flows are unstable; wear sturdy hiking shoes, and stay on marked trails. • Before hiking, tell someone where you are going and when you plan to return. • Light fires only in the rings provided. • Use caution when storing food and scented items to avoid attracting bears. • Except for service animals, pets are not recommended. Dogs must be on a leash no more than six feet long and confined to tents at night. • All natural and cultural features are protected by law and may not be disturbed or removed. Ahjumawi Lava Springs State Park U.S. FOREST S E RV I C E P R O P E RT Y Legend Paved Road 0 0.25 0.5 0 0.4 0.8 1 Mile 1.2 1.6 Kilometers Unpaved Road Trail: Hike Spatter Cone Lo op Big Lake Springs Co ne Streams/Canals Trail Bridge Ospr ey Lava Tubes Campground: Primitive Marsh Crystal Springs Campground Ja She Creek Ja She Creek Campground Parking Eastman Lake Historic Ranch House t le Rat Farm T e ul ll r ver R ive Riv McArthur Fall River Mills Trail Horr Pond Campground Fa McArthur-Burney Falls Memorial SP Big Lake Conic Depression Shallow Pond L it Ahjumawi Lava Springs SP s Tr l er Trail nip Ju Horr Pond Ri Restrooms Sprin g Tra il Boat Dock er l Tu e Picnic Area Lava Spring s Boat Launch: Vehicle A H J U M AW I L AVA S P R I N G S S TAT E PA R K Spatter B U R E AU O F L A N D MANAGEMENT P R O P E RT Y Boat Launch: Hand Lava Accessible Feature P R I V AT E P R O P E RT Y rsion Canal McArthur Dive From McArthur, turn north from SR 299 onto Main St. (east of Intermountain Fairgrounds). After ½ mile, veer right and cross over the McArthur Diversion Canal. Follow the unnamed dirt road another 3 miles to the Rat Farm boat launch and parking area. (N 41.1000˚ W 121.4120˚) to McArthur and Hwy 299 (3.5 miles) © 2012 California State Parks (Rev. 2016)