Schonchin Butte Trail

Lava Beds National Monument
Located 15.1 miles from Tulelake, California (CA)
4 Stars
1,887 Steps 1  (0.8 mi)

Schonchin Butte is named after the Modoc Indian Chief, "Old Schonchin", who lived on the land during the late 19th century. The Schonchin Butte Trail was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps between 1939 and 1941 and leads to the top of a 30,000 year old cinder cone where magnificent panoramic views of volcanic lava flows and cinder cones are visible from the fire lookout; you can be a guest of the lookout on duty during the summer months.

Schonchin Butte TrailSchonchin Butte TrailSchonchin Butte Trail


The Schonchin Butte Trail has a maximum elevation of 5,283 ft (1,610 m), a minimum elevation of 4,807 ft (1,465 m), and an elevation range of 476 ft (145 m).


[ A to B ] or [ B to A ]
Steps 1Length 2Min Ele 3Max Ele 4
1,8870.8 mi4,807 ft5,283 ft
[ A to B ]
Time 5Floors 6Gain 7Loss 8
30 min39.6475 ft0 ft
[ B to A ]
20 min0.00 ft475 ft

What is the length of the Schonchin Butte Trail?

The length of the trail is 0.8 mi (1.4 km) or 1,887 steps.

How long does it take to hike the Schonchin Butte Trail?

A person in good physical health can hike the trail in 30 min in the [ A to B ] direction, and in 20 min in the [ B to A ] direction.


The following chart shows the total calories that you may expend on the trail while hiking in the [ A to B ] and [ B to A ] direction at a typical speed and is based on gross weight (which includes anything carried), the topography, trail length and trail conditions.

Topo Maps

Download the free Schonchin Butte Trail topo map and the adjoining quads to plan your hike. These are full-sheet, 7.5 Minute (1:24,000 scale) Lava Beds National Monument topographic maps. Do you want full-sheet outdoor recreation JPEG Topo Maps?

Adjoining 7.5' Quadrangle Legend

  1. Northwest Topo Map: Mount Dome, CA
  2. North Topo Map: Captain Jacks Stronghold, CA
  3. Northeast Topo Map: The Panhandle, CA
  4. West Topo Map: Bonita Butte, CA
  5. Topo Map: Schonchin Butte, CA
  6. East Topo Map: Caldwell Butte, CA
  7. Southwest Topo Map: Little Glass Mountain, CA
  8. South Topo Map: Medicine Lake, CA
  9. Southeast Topo Map: West of Kephart, CA

Is there a Schonchin Butte trail map?

Yes, and it's free! The Schonchin Butte Trail is located on the Schonchin Butte topo map. Use the adjoining quadrangle legend to download the map.



  1. Steps is a unit of distance equal to the sum of stride lengths that vary with the terrain.
  2. Length is the distance of the trail between the two trailheads, measured on the trail.
  3. Min Ele is the minimum elevation on the trail.
  4. Max Ele is the maximum elevation on the trail.
  5. Time is the typical total time required to hike the trail.
  6. Floors is the gain divided by twelve, the height of one floor.
  7. Gain (cumulative elevation gain) is the sum of every gain in elevation.
  8. Loss (cumulative elevation loss) is the sum of every loss in elevation.