Located at the base of the Sierra Foothills, you will find Folsom Lake. The Lake was once called the greatest operative electrical plant on the American continent, and from 1885 through 1952, it generated electricity for Sacramento residents.
Almost anything you like to do, outdoor or nature-related, can be enjoyed at Folsom Lake. Popular activities include hiking on the many trails in the park. Running and horseback riding are also a treat at Folsom Lake and surrounding areas.
Hiking & Biking
If biking is your activity of choice, you will have plenty of miles to log on the 32-mile path that begins at Folsom Lake State Park and ends in Old Sacramento. On the path, you will pass many of Sacramento County’s parks, all great destinations for a rest and a picnic lunch as you pedal the path.
Picnicking Folsom Lake
Speaking of picnicking, there are beautiful picnic grounds peppered throughout the state park. Folsom State Park has many points worth visiting, some of which are Granite Bay, Beals Point, Nimbus Flats, Negro Bar, and Brown’s Ravine.
Several of these locations have launch ramps, so you can take your picnic to the water and enjoy some time on the lake in your boat. There is a day-use fee that varies depending on the location. Folsom Lake offers excellent waterskiing, wakeboarding, and similar sports. If you prefer calmer water sports, you might consider Lake Natoma, where no powerboats over 5 HP are permitted.
Fishing Folsom Lake
If there is a fisherman in your group, there is fishing to be had at Folsom Lake. Trout and catfish are among the fish often caught at Folsom Lake. The lake also has populations of largemouth, smallmouth, and spotted bass. Bluegill, crappie are common, along with the occasional kokanee salmon.
Camping at Folsom Lake
Given the many fun things to do at Folsom Lake, it is a great vacation destination for a family who likes camping. There are campsites available for recreational vehicles measuring the length of up to 31 feet. The most popular camping area is Beals Point which offers 49 sites, a snack bar, and a lifeguard on duty in the summer in the swim areas.
Boat-in camping is a lot of fun if you have a self-contained boat for you and your guest, including sleeping space for all onboard. There are designated places on the lake for mooring/camping. If you prefer shore camping, there are over 100 sites at Peninsula Campground.
Folsom Lake is a great destination, whether for the day or several days of camping. If you are camping, you might consider these other attractions as side trips. California State Railroad Museum, The State Capitol Museum, Sutter’s Fort, and the Old Governor’s Mansion. All about 30 miles distance.
Getting to Folsom Lake
Folsom Lake is easy to find. It is 30 miles east of Sacramento and accessible from highways 50 (exit Hazel or Folsom Blvd.) or Interstate 80 (exit Douglas)