Willow Creek and Kings River Watersheds

Willow Creek watershed

  • Bass Lake
  • Manzanita Lake
  • Willow Creek (ND)


San Joaquin River

  • Kerckhoff Reservoir


Kings River watershed

  • Lake Wishon
  • Keller Ranch


Willow Creek watershed

BassLake:  Bass Lake (4.5 miles long, surface area 1165 acres, elevation 3400 feet) is a major recreational area in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, easily accessible from the cities of the San Joaquin Valley.  The northeast shore is urban, occupied by recreation residences and two resorts.  The southwest shore is much less developed; the forested slopes above the southwest lakeshore road are an attractive background for the lake.  The Forest Service operates six campgrounds on the southwest shore, with a total capacity of 550 and about 110,000 visits in a recent year.  PG&E and the Forest Service are sharing equally in the reconstruction of several of the campgrounds.  The narrow strip owned by PG&E along about 80% of the southwest shoreline provides public access to the lake.  The total area of these lands, most of which are under FERC license, is a few hundred acres.  Almost all these PG&E lands are contiguous to national forest land.

ManzanitaLake:  Manzanita Lake, a powerhouse afterbay, is a long narrow 26-acre reservoir on the North Fork of Willow Creek at elevation 2800’.  This attractive lake, which is regularly stocked, is a very popular day-use and fishing area for the nearby town of North Fork, with 14,400 visits in 1996.  Only non-motorized boats are allowed.  PG&E owns a narrow strip around the lake, and about 320 acres occupied by project features upstream from and to the west of the lake.  Most of the PG&E lands are contiguous to other private ownerships.

San Joaquin River

Kerckhoff Reservoir:  Kerckhoff Reservoir, at an elevation of 1000’ on the San Joaquin River, is a 2.5 mile long relatively shallow forebay for two downstream powerhouses    Rapidly changing water levels, warm water in summer, and summer heat limit its attractiveness to fishermen.  There is a small campground and day-use facility on the north shore.  PG&E owns about 320 acres at the north end of the reservoir, about half under FERC license.  The PG&E lands are mostly bounded by national forest on the north and east, and by other private lands on the west and south.

Kings River watershed

LakeWishon:  Lake Wishon is a 1,025-acre reservoir on the North Fork of the Kings River at an elevation of 6550’.  Recreation use - 22,000 visitors in a recent year - is below the capacity of facilities.  The lake is regularly stocked with rainbow trout, and trout fishing is considered good. Boating use is relatively light.  PG&E provides a small campground and several fishing accesses.  A major John Muir Wilderness trailhead is located a mile east of the dam.  PG&E owns about one-third of the 9 miles of shoreline and about 450 acres of steep, rugged terrain adjacent to the lake on the east, north, and west, mostly outside the FERC license boundary.  These PG&E lands are surrounded by national forest land.

Keller Ranch (Kings River): The PG&E property known as Keller Ranch, an area of approximately 100 acres, is located on the south bank of the Kings River at the head of Pine Flat Reservoir.  It is the only feasible takeout point for whitewater rafting on the Kings River and is leased to the Forest Service for that use.