Lake Clementine


Trail photos

Photo ofLake Clementine Photo ofLake Clementine Photo ofLake Clementine


Trail stats

8.24 nm
Elevation gain
26 ft
Technical difficulty
Elevation loss
26 ft
Max elevation
785 ft
Min elevation
647 ft
Trail type
4 hours 27 minutes
October 10, 2022
September 2022

near Clipper Gap, California (United States)

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Trail photos

Photo ofLake Clementine Photo ofLake Clementine Photo ofLake Clementine

Itinerary description

A very pretty lake with lush foliage, clear pools and no bathtub ring. My favorite low country lake for kayaking so far. The upper end is popular for swimming and the whole lake for paddling.

There are beautiful swimming holes at the upper end, the last of which has rope swings. We continued a little past that going as far up the up the river as we could. There wasn’t any current but it quickly became too shallow. There were a also a few shallow sections below the upper end put in that required pulling up the rudder but were passable.

Toward the middle of the lake is a low lying and densely treed island that is well defended against landing. We explored two pretty dead end side channels screened from the lake by trees. The side channel on the north side is hard to spot coming from the upper end and has a lot of submerged logs and a few above the channel that eventually blocked us.

Another point of interest is a view of robber’s roost, a large rock on the north bank not far from the dam.

We saw lots of fish, friendly and talkative geese, some ducks, an otter, a turtle, and a deer on the island.

There was just one jet ski and a power boat on the lower lake on a hot week day. Motors are not allowed on the upper half of the lake.

There is parking and a boat ramp at the lower / dam end and a large parking lot a short walk from the beach at the river inlet / upper end. We launched at the upper end because of an accurate forecast that the wind would increase in the afternoon and blow from the lower end of the lake. The trade off is that unlike the smooth paved road to the dam, the dirt road to the upper end is more pothole than road in some places. Easier in a high clearance vehicle and you don’t need 4x4. You won’t get stuck, but you will get bounced around.

There is $10 day use fee. Dogs are not allowed. There are some picnic tables, and porta potties are scattered around the parking lots, shore and floating on the lake. Bring drinking water.


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