Beautiful views, an easy drive, forested, and at higher elevation for a cooler temperature. Perfect for a family day on the water. Equestrian trails too.
Located 15 miles northeast of Foresthill.
For your inner tarzan!
Rope swings were popular this weekend.
Fishing for warm and cold water species is good. The boat ramp (with a large parking and restroom)is located on the southeast side of the lake. I parked on the southwest side where there is also ample parking, no restroom, that is located along Sugar Pine Road before it becomes Iowa Hill Road.
Several campgrounds are walking distance from the lake, as well as day use parking with the advantages of picnic tables and bathrooms. Manzanita Day Use Area fills up on hot days. There are also biking and horseback riding trails available, and OHV areas are open in Tahoe National Forest.
Family and group sized spots were available when I drove through Shirttail Campground on Saturday, but I would always recommend trying for reservations.
As I left, I made the decision to follow the "primitive road", Iowa Hill Road to Colfax, rather than retrace my longer drive up through Foresthill. The views were a pleasure, if you don't mind driving along a mountainside with steep canyon walls descending father down than the eye could see along one side!
Before long I entered the fee area (laughably) since behind this sign is a wide turnout without so much as a garbage can! However, there are some excellent recreation sites and campgrounds in Tahoe National Forest.
For campgrounds and fees, click here.
Hairpin turns on this "primitive" route too. As you can see, the term means narrower, and curvy, but not dirt or for four wheelers. The pavement was well maintained.
As you reach the North Fork of the American River, there are day use spaces (fees apply) and a campground available near the river. Not far back up the hill from here is the parking for another favorite hike called Windy Point Trail.
On my way to town, I couldn't resist stopping in a non-fee area to pick blackberries. They are delights, each and every one! More flavorful than any you find in stores or fruit stands!
- HORSEBACK RIDING
- WATER SPORTS
- WILDLIFE VIEWING
Almost everything here fits into "Easy" ratings, although the day use beach and near the boat ramp are best with small children.
To find your way, a map is provided here.
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