California Lakes to Enjoy

Whether you want to take a boat ride or relax on the shore, you can find some great California lakes to enjoy. You can find big lakes such as Lake Havasu, Lake Berryessa, and Lake Arrowhead, as well as smaller lakes like Cachuma and Donner Lake.

Located in the southern Sierra Nevada Mountains, Lake Isabella is a reservoir and a popular California vacation destination. It offers year-round water sports and is a great location to fish for largemouth bass, rainbow trout, smallmouth bass, and catfish. The lake is also a favorite spot for off-roaders and birdwatchers.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers created the reservoir in 1953. It serves as an irrigation reservoir and flood-risk management system. It also provides recreational benefits, such as boating, swimming, fishing, and picnicking.

California lakes
California lakes – Lake Isabella

Lake Isabella is one of the largest reservoirs in California. It has a surface area of 11,200 acres. It is located near the town of Kernville and is surrounded by a rugged mountain landscape. There are numerous communities around the lake’s shores.

Many people enjoy the lake’s warm water and good winds. Waterskiing and waterboarding are popular. The lake also attracts people who enjoy sailing, kayaking, and canoeing. The lake also has two marinas on the west shore. There are also several public boat launch ramps.

Lake Isabella, CA
Lake Isabella, CA

The lake is home to many different fish, including catfish, bluegill, smallmouth bass, rainbow trout, and brown trout. The lake also has bullhead catfish and white catfish. The best time to fish is in the spring and summer.

Lake Isabella is a popular location for water sports and water skiing. The lake has two marinas and some public boat launch ramps. Boaters are required to purchase a boat permit. The permits are available at the following locations: North Fork Marina, French Gulch Marina, Crossroads Shell, James Station, Mt. Mesa Shell, and Kern Valley Marina.

Shasta Lake

Located in Northern California, Shasta Lake is the largest reservoir in the state. It is surrounded by steep, rugged mountains and is a popular destination for houseboaters and water sports enthusiasts.

Shasta Lake Rainbow from Hirz Lookout
Shasta Lake Rainbow from Hirz Lookout

Located in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest, the lake is home to numerous wilderness trails. Its rugged terrain offers visitors front-row tickets to diverse flora and fauna. In winter, snowmobiling and cross-country skiing are available. In the summer, the lake offers a wide range of water sports.

Shasta Lake offers first-class fishing. It is home to trout, salmon, sturgeon, and spotted bass. These are stocked annually by the California Department of Fish and Game.

Cachuma Lake

Located in the Santa Ynez Valley in the San Rafael Mountains, Cachuma Lake, California, is an ideal destination for a relaxing getaway. The lake is surrounded by 9,000 acres of wilderness and offers various recreational activities.

Cachuma Lake in the summer
Cachuma Lake in the summer

Santa Barbara County Parks at Cachuma Lake operates four main campgrounds. The Lake’s campgrounds offer tent sites, cabins, and group camping areas. Campsites are available by reservation. There is also a general store with groceries, supplies, and propane.

The Cachuma Lake Marina offers boat rentals, mooring services, and a bait/tackle shop. They also sell fishing licenses and boat fuel. They also have a boat storage facility.

Big Bear Lake

Located in San Bernardino County, California, Big Bear Lake is a small mountain city known for its pristine lake and mountainous scenery. This mountainous resort is famous for skiing, biking, and water sports. With 300 days of sunshine, it’s a destination for people from all walks of life.

Big Bear Lake at Dawn
Big Bear Lake at Dawn

Big Bear Lake is surrounded by the San Bernardino National Forest, which offers a variety of hiking and biking trails. You can also rent watercraft at one of the six marinas in the area.

The Big Bear Valley is home to two ski resorts, which are ideal for a day on the slopes. The Snow Summit Bike Park is also famous, with various downhill trails.

Lake Havasu

Located in Arizona, Lake Havasu is a pristine and turquoise oasis. It is a 45-mile-long reservoir that straddles the California/Arizona border. It is ideal for boating, sailing, and fishing.

Lake Havasu Climb
Lake Havasu Climb

It is home to a wide variety of fish, including bluegill, largemouth bass, and striped bass. It also supports rainbow trout from upstream waters. The lake also supports several species of sunfish.

Lake Havasu is a popular fishing destination. Its waters produce some of the best smallmouth basses in the state. During the spring and summer months, Lake Havasu is full of visitors. It is also home to several fishing tournaments.

Lake Arrowhead

Lake Arrowhead is a beautiful place to experience nature in the San Bernardino Mountains. It is a popular mountain resort destination that offers a variety of outdoor activities to keep you busy all year long. You can enjoy fishing, water skiing, and more.

Lake Arrowhead, CA
Lake Arrowhead, CA

The San Bernardino Mountains produce much exciting flora and fauna. The surrounding area is perfect for hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding. During the winter, the area gets a bit of snow. The best time to visit the lake is spring and early summer.

Lake Berryessa

Located in the Napa County area, Lake Berryessa, California, is a lake that provides excellent fishing and boating opportunities. The water in Lake Berryessa is warm in the summer, reaching 75 degrees. The lake’s shoreline is a great place to see birds and wildlife. The shoreline is also home to Manzanita trees, which protect hawks.

Lake Berryessa
Lake Berryessa

The Bureau of Reclamation built Monticello Dam on Putah Creek in 1957 for flood control. The dam’s reservoir filled 20,000 acres by 1963.

When the dam was finished, the public began using the lake. In 1958, the County of Napa assumed management of the lake. This led to a conflict between the county and the Bureau of Reclamation over the management of Lake Berryessa.

Donner Lake

Donner Lake is located in the Sierra Nevada Mountains and has great natural beauty. It is surrounded by a rich pine forest and is an excellent location for fishing and water sports. The lake is under three miles long and is home to rainbow trout, brown trout, and kokanee salmon. It is also a popular destination for swimming, water skiing, and hiking.

Donner Lake, California
Donner Lake, California

The park features the Pioneer Monument, commemorating the historic Donner Party that traveled to California in the mid-19th century. The park has numerous attractions, including a visitor center, an Emigrant Trail Museum, hiking trails, and water sports. It also provides access to several different beaches.

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