The Marble Mountain area was classified as a Primitive Area as long ago as 1931, and reclassified as Wilderness Area in 1953, prior to the 1964 creation of the National Wilderness Preservation System. Today the Marble Wilderness Area, a labyrinth of ancient rocks, including some of the continent's oldest formations, carved by glaciers into knife-edge ridges. Located between the City of Yreka and the Pacific Coast, just below the Oregon border, it occupies 525,000 acres, reaching up to 8,300 feet of altitude.
The Russian Wilderness Area, a 12,000-acre beauty with dozens of accessible trout fishing lakes is centered around the Russian Peak, a massive uplift of white granodiorite, occupying the triangle between the North and South Forks of the Salmon River and the flat ranchlands of Scott Valley. Art Bernstein, a hiker-naturalist residing in the area for over 30 years, describes the region on his uniquely wonderful writing style, and accurately points out locations of trailheads, camping sites, making interesting comments about the path and destinations.