Sunday, May 18, 2014

A Weekend At Pine Flat Lake

Loaded up the Clipper and headed out about 11:00 am for the 4 1/2 hour drive to Pine Flat Lake about 40 miles East of Fresno, California.

Estimated temperature for Friday at the lake was 95 degrees. Might have been 95, but it felt like 115. You have to keep in mind that this was the first really hot day we've run into this year so of course it felt hotter than it really was. I haven't sweated that much since last summer.

Once again, the campground was not what we expected. On the other hand, we had originally planned to stay at Island Park Campground run by the Corp of Engineers and the one we stayed at was a private campground called Lakeridge. 

This is the picture off their website. 

This is what we got.

Our spot for two nights.
At least we were the only ones in the seven campsites. Makes for a nice quiet time.

We tried out our new Weber Smokey Joe "Jumbo Joe" grill with a couple of turkey burgers on Friday night and chicken breasts on Saturday night.

Weber Jumbo Joe
Once we got set up Friday we set off on a reconnoiter trip. First was down to the Kings River which flows out of Pine Flat Dam. I forgot to tell you that the plan was to meet Dan from The Impractical Fishermen on Saturday and fish the Kings, so I wanted to see what and where our options were before Dan got there.

Found some nice tailwater just below the dam and a good place to park. OK, good to go. We wandered further down the river and stumbled across a place I camped, back in the 80's, with my Brother and Sister-in-Law. It is where I initially wanted to camp, but couldn't for the life of me remember the name of the place and because it's more of a park than a campground I probably would have never found it anyway. If you look on Google Maps it is only listed as a park, but if you go to the actual website they do list camping.

Dan show up Saturday morning, but he gets the pleasure of writing the post, so go here to see how it went.

On the way back to the campground, we wanted to see what Island Park was like since we had made reservations and cancelled because of some pictures of the campsites. Once we got near the campground, the last mile was what I would call a switchback road. I couldn't see how anyone could get our little 17 foot trailer down that road let alone something larger. With it being as hot as it was, I'm sure the spot we had picked would have been awful at best. Glad we switched although, as I mentioned above, the one we got wasn't all that good.  

We hung out Saturday night and headed home early this morning. Next weekend trip is mid-June and we're headed up to Hope Valley for three days.

Now back to normal fishing.


  1. Hey Mark, I like the shady looking camp site. Maybe not as nice as the picture but it looks pretty cozy to me. Okay, I've got to go to visit Dan's site now. Later...

    1. Sorry about not having it up yet. You retired guys with no kids crying and needing diapers got the advantage on me. :D

    2. Daniel, they know what causes babies now. I can attest to it! :)

  2. I think about you guys in California a lot lately. Lack of water, wild fires, etc. Very happy to see that you and the wife got out and enjoyed some of the great outdoors that California offers. Better than sitting at home...........................

  3. That grass is in dire need of water. I'm hoping some rain is on the menu for California soon! Good to see you were able to get out and enjoy the outdoors.

  4. I had a similar experience when we camped at sycamore ranch in yuba county. The map and the pictures make it seem like a completely different animal and you end up with quite a surprise when you arrive! haha Hope you had a good time. I look forward te reading Daniels post!

  5. Many times I was fooled by a pretty picture in an advertisement.
    You made the best of it.

  6. Finally got it posted, sorry for the delays. Got a lot of chores done in the mean time though.

  7. Mark
    You are lucky to have a wife that enjoys camping out with you, my wife's idea of camping out is the nearest Hampton Inn. I will check out the trip at Daniel's site. thanks for sharing