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The Many Myths of Mount Shasta

mount shasta

Mount Shasta is located in northern California, and is a favored destination for outdoor lovers and extreme sports enthusiasts. However, those who are intrigued by folklore and legend will also find the area compelling, as it is the subject of an unusual number of tantalizing myths.

Although the Mount Shasta area has plenty of luxury resorts and breathtaking views, it is also rooted in rich Native American history. The grand peak of the volcano was once the physical and visual center of several tribes, which used legends to connect the material and spiritual worlds.

There are countless Native American myths about the region, but over the years, non-tribal stories began to unfold. One of the biggest claims is that the mountain is home to a secret city. In some myths, the city is uninhabited, while other stories say it's home to technologically advanced humans and mythical creatures.

The most well-known legend centers around the Lemurians, descendants of a lost continent that sunk long ago. According to, the Lemurians are said to live deep inside the mountain in gold-plated homes. They have been physically described as over 7 feet tall with long, flowing hair, and are said to dress in white robes and sandals. They are most distinguishable by a walnut-sized organ that protrudes from their foreheads, which helps them communicate through ESP.

The Oracle Star describes another race of mountain inhabitants called Yaktavians, who are known as the greatest bellmakers in the world. They are experts of sound and vibration, which they use along with invisible bells to protect the secret entrances to their caverns. Meanwhile, there have been sightings of dwarves that are also said to live inside the mountain.

Another legend says that a British prospector named JC Brown discovered a lost underground city beneath Mount Shasta in 1904. In the book 'Weird California,' as cited by Wikipedia, "Brown had been hired by The Lord Cowdray Mining Company of England to prospect for gold, and discovered a cave which sloped downward for 11 miles. In the cave, he found an underground village filled with gold, shields, and mummies, some being up to 10 feet tall."

Decades later, Brown told his story to a man who ultimately rounded up an exploration team of 80 to look for the underground city. However, on the day that the group was set to depart, Brown did not show up. He was never heard from again.

Legends aside, Mount Shasta offers plenty of natural phenomena, such as hot and cold springs, caverns and caves. Many tourists enjoy the snowboarding, skiing, camping and hiking that the area has to offer -- just know that while you're enjoying the great outdoors, you could possibly have a run-in with a mountain inhabitant or two.

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