Virtual Guidebook to Lassen Volcanic Park and the Modoc Plateau
Devils Homestead Lava Flow
Lava Beds National Monument California


Viciously jagged black rock covers most of this small national monument. These are lava flows from recent geologic times, and new eruptions could conceivably occur. The whole area is riddled with lava tube caves, some with developed access, others completely wild and many probably still undiscovered. There are also other volcanic features, such as splatter cones, cinder cones, and eruption craters.

Skull Cave, named for bighorn sheep skulls found deep inside, is one of the largest diameter lava tubes. Its lowest level is floored with year-around ice.



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The incredibly rough Devils Homestead Lave Flow, riddled with lava tube caves

(July 20, 2011)


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The Geography field class 2004 enjoys the sunset from Fleeners Chimneys, a splatter cone

(September 18, 2004)


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The Fleener Chimneys are a volcanic eruptive feature known as splatter cones

(July 21, 2011)


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Looking down the throat of one of the Fleener Chimneys, a source of the Devils Homestead Lave Flow

(July 21, 2011)


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The Bunchgrass trail viewpoint looks north to Schonchin Butte and Tule Lake

(July 20, 2011)


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This shallow section of Skull Cave has collapsed, offering entry to the cave in both directions

(July 21, 2011)


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Stone steps and a paved trail lead down into Skull Cave

(July 21, 2011)


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Skull Cave drops slowly at first, then turns a corner and plunges down into darkness

(July 21, 2011)


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A paved trail and aluminum ladders make huge Skull Cave easy to explore

(July 21, 2011)


Next Locality: The Central part of Lava Beds