Nobles Trail

Summary  Link to more information about summary

Difficulty 3 Intermediate
Length 5.1 miles one-way
5850 feet
+600, -550 one-way
Navigation Road and marked trail
Time Most of a day
Season December through mid-April
Snowmobiles Use Not permitted [Please report illegal use of snowmobiles in this area.]
USGS Topo 7.5' series, Manzanita Lake

Lassen Park Road, 0.7 mile southeast of Highway 44, and 200 feet past the Manzanita Lake Entrance Station.

End Lassen Park Road, 0.5 mile past the Manzanita Lake Entrance Station, where the road is no longer plowed.

Description   Link to more information about description

William Nobles, a prospector, discovered the Nobles Trail in 1851 where a road was constructed a year later. Until the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad in 1869, this was the best route across northeastern California to the Upper Sacramento Valley.

Today, the historic Nobles Trail, sometimes referred to as the Emigrant Trail, makes a good loop tour when combined with part of Lassen Park Road. The Nobles Trail section of the tour climbs 450 feet along the southeast flank of Table Mountain before it descends through heavy timber to the park road at Sunflower Flat.

As you ski on Lassen Park Road, you will have great difficulty in spotting the Nobles Trail at Sunflower Flat, therefore, to make the loop first ski the Nobles Trail, marked with brightly colored triangles, and return via the park road.

Mileage Log   Link to more information about mileage log
Numbers in parentheses
correspond to mileage points on map

Waypoint 1 to 2
Miles: 0.0 - 0.5
Elevation change: -50 

From the trailhead (1) ski north on a road that is the Nobles Trail for 0.5 mile until you reach the end of the road (2). Here you will find powerlines crossing the road and you will find a small building if it has not yet been torn down.

Waypoint 2 to 3
Miles: 0.5 - 1.6
Elevation change: +250 

Climb gradually east following the contour of the base of Table Mountain on the marked trail for 1.1 miles until you reach the point where the trail turns north (3).

Waypoint 3 to 4
Miles: 1.6 - 2.8
Elevation change: +200, -250 

Climb north and northeast for 0.3 mile in order to stay along the base of Table Mountain and then continue northeast descending for 0.9 mile until you reach Lassen Park Road at Sunflower Flat (4). The first 0.3 mile does not follow the switchbacks of the trail. It is up to you whether you want to follow them or not.

The high point is Nobles Pass, which is actually 50 feet higher that the gap 200 yards to the south.

Waypoint 4 to 5
Miles: 2.8 - 3.8
Elevation change: +150 

Turn southwest (right) onto Lassen Park Road and ascend gradually for 1.0 mile until you reach a high point (5).

Waypoint 5 to 6
Miles: 3.8 - 5.1
Elevation change: -250 

Continue southwest and then west on Lassen Park Road for 1.3 miles until you reach the plowed road (6). This point is near Manzanita Lake Ranger Station that is closed in winter. You are also 0.5 mile from where you started the tour.

Print version of map for tour