Hatchet Creek Falls is a popular swimming hole and cliff jumping destination in Shasta County. The falls are split by a fallen tree that has been made into a makeshift staircase, providing easy and fun access to surrounding cliffs. There are many places to jump from of varying height. In winter months the water is near freezing due to snowmelt, but in the summer months the temperature warms a bit and is a perfect escape from the heat.
There are two paths to reach the falls. By far the easiest follows the edge of the creek after exiting the tunnel of vegetation. The more difficult path travels to the right and up the hill.
The source of Hatchet Creek lies between Snow, Green, and Clover Mountains in the Lassen National Forest. From here many smaller spring-fed creeks join Hatchet Creek before the falls. A few miles downstream the creek fills the Pit 7 Reservoir that provides electricity to surrounding areas by means of a hydroelectric dam.
Swimming holes and cliff jumping can be extremely dangerous and unpredictable outdoor activities that pose significant risks regarding personal safety. Changing water levels, unseen rocks, and river bottoms that have shifted with currents and seasonal weather can turn a well-known jumping area into a serious hazard. Prior to engaging in these activities, extensively scout the current conditions, and understand the risks involved with serious injury and the logistical challenges of evacuation from the water so you can make safe decisions.