Our annual trip to "Camp Rutabaga", also know as Diablo Campground near the Sierra Buttes - was delayed till September this year. Last weekend we finally got into the Sierras for some camping, hiking and tall tales. After huge snowfall last winter, there was snow on the ground and on the trails much later than usual this summer. A friend who intended to hike for a month on the Pacific Crest Trail beginning in April had to cancel his sabbatical. Too much snow made the trail impassable.
We went up to Mills Peak fire lookout station and found a "manned" fire lookout. The building was built in the 1930's and has weathered the severe conditions very well.
I spent some time talking with the Ranger who also "manned" the fire lookout. He said that there would probably be over 150 visitors on this beautiful September Saturday. Through the glass you can see him looking off toward the northwest with his binoculars.
There is a panoramic view of this lakes region of the Sierras. The Sierra Valley, source of the Feather River is easily visible to the east, with Mount Lassen visible to the north.
It's hard to believe that we have come back to this area the past four years, and had not been up to Mills Peak. What other treasures lie waiting in these mountains?