Comments: The Thunder Mountain trail begins in a forested area and climbs to a ridge line that overlooks the Kirkwood Ski Resort. Along the way is an amazing variety of wildflowers. Early on you will see a field of the bright red/orange Scarlet Gilia. And if you look closely you might find some of the parasitic flowers. One of my hikers asked what is "that" and I said a pine cone - until I looked closer and saw a cluster of the strange Corymb Broomrape (below left). At the top are great views and some of the alpine flowers.
Directions: The trailhead (well signed on the south side of Route 88) is found about 2 miles west of the entrance to Kirkwood Ski Resort. This is also 7 miles west of the Caron Pass trailhead whose description you will find under "hikes" and "Carson Pass" in this website.