This mostly pine and cedar–ringed human- made lake in an open granitic basin with a mountain backdrop is a Western Sierra summer recreation mecca. Although the southwest end of the lake’s marinas, beaches, and rustic cabin resort services are the antithesis of a “wilderness” experience, the 4.0-mile National Recreation Trail stitching the lakeshore boasts a surprisingly stunning and ruggedly natural hiking experience. The trail crosses granite shelves and climbs up rock- terraced steps along the north and east stretch of the lake loop with refreshing dipping opportunities for you and Pooch.
Members of the Sierra Me-Wuk tribe were the first to set up seasonal camps for trading in the Pinecrest area. The business of storing the “liquid gold” took root during the mining days of the Sierra Nevada and flourished in the logging era to supply the growing towns of the Sierra foothills. Strawberry Lake, named for the wild strawberries in the meadow, was created by a dam in 1856.
© 2014 Linda B. Mullally and David S. Mullally/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.