Chip O'Brien

Chip O'Brien is a regular contributor to California Fly Fisher and Northwest Fly Fishing magazines, and author of River Journal, Sacramento River and California's Best Fly Fishing: Premier Streams and Rivers from Northern California to the Eastern Sierra. He lived in Redding, California, for eighteen years, where he was a guide, teacher, and regional manager for CalTrout.
Outdoors

Greased Bowling Balls and the Circle of Life on the Klamath River

Photo: Bureau of Land Management Oregon and Washington “WHOA,” my teenage son screamed. “Watch out! Those rocks are slippery. I…

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History

The Legend of Old Shavehead – The Lassen Native American Known for Murdering Samuel Burney

As written in the book California’s Best Fly Fishing Old Shavehead. Photo: California State University, Chico While geologists estimate that…

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Outdoors

To Dam or Un-Dam California? Now That’s a Complicated Question.

While some dams are old and nearly useless, major dams like Shasta provide flood control and water storage for millions…

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Destinations

The Best Places to Go Bird Watching in Siskiyou County

Brought to you by Discover Siskiyou Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge. Photo: U.S. Fish and Wildlife In a world with…

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Destinations

Discover a Captivating Underground World at Lake Shasta Caverns

It was a foregone conclusion that I would love the Shasta Caverns tour. First, you find it off the O’Brien…

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Destinations

Exploring Redding’s Great Outdoors on the Sacramento River Trail

Brought to you by Visit Redding Photo: Visit Redding We’ve all felt like we were going in circles at some…

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Destinations

The History of the McCloud River and its World-Famous Fish

Photo: California Trout It’s the strangest feeling. I can be standing for hours in a rushing trout stream totally absorbed…

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Destinations

Road Trippin’ Northern California’s Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway

Brought to you by Discover Siskiyou Mount Shasta overlooks much of the North State and provides a certain familiar presence.…

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Destinations

7 Exhilarating Summit Hikes Around Redding, California

Brought to you by Visit Redding Photo of Chip O’Brien on the Summit of Mt. Shasta “Doubly happy,” said John…

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History

Did the Real-Life Tarzan Dive Off Burney Falls?

BThe story was well known to me, but we at Active NorCal always check our sources. If you Google “Tarzan,…

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North Coast

Coming Home – Chronicles of a Trinity River Steelhead

She was late getting back to the Trinity this year, at least later than a lot of the others. They…

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History

The Lockhart Ferry Massacre: Northern California’s Bloody War of the 1850’s

Peering into the lives of the first non-Native people in Northern California, dreams, imaginings and real history clash in a…

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Destinations

A Harrowing Journey into the Haunted Caribou Wilderness

“AAAAAAUUUUAAAACK… AAAAAAUUUUAAAACK…” My eyes opened the size of softballs and the sleeping bag I’d been dozing in nearly lifted off…

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Stories

Almost Climbing Mount Shasta: A Story of Misery and Life Lessons at 14,000 Feet

At four thirty in the morning no one saw the light from my tiny headlamp inching uphill in pitch darkness…

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Outdoors

Fly Fishing on the Haunted Upper Sacramento River

Thankfully, no invisible or bony hand ever reached out to touch my shoulder on dark evenings while fishing the October…

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Outdoors

I Spent a Day Snorkeling Down Clear Creek in Redding. Am I Weird?

When you combine a pithy streak of spontaneity with a penchant for living life on the edge, bad things might…

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History

What’s in a Name? The Story Behind Hat Creek

Names almost always make for a good story, and Hat Creek is no exception. Of course, not everyone may agree that…

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