- Sequoia Parks Conservancy
- 47050 Generals Hwy Unit 10 - Three Rivers
- California 93271 - United States
- [email protected]
Lake Kaweah is a reservoir located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountain range in California, United States. It was formed by the construction of the Terminus Dam on the Kaweah River in 1960. The lake serves as a water supply for the surrounding communities and as a recreational area for visitors.
Prior to the construction of the dam, the Kaweah River was prone to flooding, causing damage to property and agriculture in the surrounding areas. The idea for a dam on the river was first proposed in the early 1900s, but it wasn't until the 1950s that the necessary funding and political support were obtained to begin construction.
Construction of the Terminus Dam began in 1955 and was completed in 1960. The lake behind the dam was named Lake Kaweah in honor of the Kaweah River, which was named by local Native American tribes. The lake has a capacity of approximately 185,000 acre-feet of water and is about six miles long.
In addition to serving as a water supply, Lake Kaweah is a popular destination for boating, fishing, camping, and hiking. The lake is surrounded by the Sierra Nevada foothills, providing scenic views and opportunities for outdoor recreation. The area is also home to a diverse array of wildlife, including eagles, ospreys, and deer.
Overall, Lake Kaweah has played an important role in the history and development of the surrounding communities, providing both a reliable source of water and a recreational destination for visitors.
Top Tourist Attractions
Lake Kaweah and its surrounding area offer a range of attractions and activities for visitors. Here are some of the top tourist attractions in the area:
- Boating and Water Sports: Lake Kaweah is a popular destination for boating, water skiing, and other water sports. The lake offers multiple boat launch ramps, as well as rental options for boats and other watercraft.
- Fishing: Lake Kaweah is home to a variety of fish species, including bass, catfish, and trout. Fishing is permitted in the lake year-round, with a valid California fishing license.
- Camping: There are several campgrounds located around Lake Kaweah, offering a range of camping options, from tent sites to RV hookups.
- Hiking and Biking: The area around Lake Kaweah offers a variety of hiking and biking trails, with options for all skill levels. Some popular trails include the Kaweah Oaks Preserve and the Mineral King Valley Trail.
- Sequoia National Park: Located just a short drive from Lake Kaweah, Sequoia National Park is home to some of the world's largest trees, including the General Sherman Tree, which is the largest tree by volume in the world.
- Three Rivers: A small town located near Lake Kaweah, Three Rivers offers a variety of shops, restaurants, and art galleries, as well as access to the Kaweah River.
- Kaweah Marina: The Kaweah Marina offers boat rentals, fishing supplies, and a cafe with lakefront dining.
Overall, Lake Kaweah and its surrounding area offer something for everyone, from outdoor enthusiasts to families looking for a fun getaway.
The climate around Lake Kaweah is typical of the Sierra Nevada foothills region, with hot, dry summers and mild winters. Here's a more detailed look at the climate around Lake Kaweah:
- Summer: Summers around Lake Kaweah are hot and dry, with temperatures often exceeding 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius). June, July, and August are the hottest months, with average high temperatures ranging from the mid-90s to low 100s Fahrenheit (mid to high 30s Celsius). Nights are usually cooler, with average lows in the 60s Fahrenheit (around 20 degrees Celsius).
- Fall: Fall is a pleasant time to visit Lake Kaweah, with cooler temperatures and less crowds than in the summer months. September and October are typically warm, with average high temperatures in the 80s Fahrenheit (around 30 degrees Celsius).
- Winter: Winters around Lake Kaweah are mild, with occasional cold snaps and light snowfall in the higher elevations. December, January, and February are the coolest months, with average high temperatures in the 50s to 60s Fahrenheit (around 10 to 15 degrees Celsius) and average low temperatures in the 30s Fahrenheit (around 0 to 5 degrees Celsius).
- Spring: Spring around Lake Kaweah is a beautiful time to visit, with wildflowers in bloom and temperatures warming up. March, April, and May are typically mild, with average high temperatures in the 70s Fahrenheit (around 20 to 25 degrees Celsius).
Overall, Lake Kaweah has a Mediterranean climate, characterized by mild, wet winters and hot, dry summers. Visitors should be prepared for high temperatures in the summer months and cooler temperatures in the winter months, and should be aware of fire danger during the dry season.
The lake is situated approximately 25 miles east of the city of Visalia and 30 miles southeast of the city of Fresno. Here's a more detailed look at the geography of Lake Kaweah:
- Size and Elevation: Lake Kaweah is a man-made reservoir with a surface area of approximately 1,600 acres and a maximum depth of 250 feet. The lake sits at an elevation of 710 feet above sea level.
- Surrounding Terrain: The area around Lake Kaweah is characterized by rolling hills and canyons, with the Sierra Nevada mountain range visible to the east. The terrain is generally dry and rocky, with sparse vegetation and occasional stands of oak and chaparral.
- Rivers and Creeks: Lake Kaweah is formed by the Terminus Dam on the Kaweah River. Several other creeks and tributaries feed into the lake, including Ash Mountain Creek, Horse Creek, and Dry Creek.
- Access: Lake Kaweah is accessible via California State Route 198, which runs along the southern edge of the lake. There are multiple boat launch ramps and campgrounds located around the lake, as well as hiking trails and other recreational areas.
- Nearby Attractions: Lake Kaweah is located near several other popular attractions, including Sequoia National Park, Kings Canyon National Park, and the cities of Visalia and Fresno. The area is known for its outdoor recreation opportunities, including hiking, camping, fishing, and boating.
Overall, the geography of Lake Kaweah is characterized by rugged, dry terrain, with the lake serving as an important water source and recreational destination for visitors to the area.