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AREA ACTIVITIES & RESTORATION

AREA ACTIVITIES & RESTORATION

FINNON LAKE

FINNON LAKE

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 Notice: www.finnonlake.com is not associated with the lake’s owning entity.  Click Me!

Finnon Lake Recreation Area is approximately 120 acres located in the Sierra Nevada Foothills.  At about 2400 feet in elevation the area is quite, peaceful, and relaxing.  Catch and release fishing is available at Finnon Lake, along with boating (no gas powered boats; hand row or electric trolling only), camping, hiking, and a twenty “hole” disk golf course is available.  Links for more information can be located on the CAMPING page.


In addition there are many more activities and experiences that are all close by. The Eldorado National Forest, Placerville (or Old Hangtown as it was called), Gold Bug Park, The Rubicon Trail, White Water Rafting, ATV Trails, and much more are all close by.


Information on how to get to Finnon as well as links to nearby activities can be viewed by clicking HERE.


Sadly in the past three years since the dam was replaced the lake is still not full.  The owner of the lake, which is actually an entity, ruled by a seven person board of directors, has had the past three years to get Finnon filled.  That hasn’t happened.  As noted on their website the entity owes the State of California an annual fee of $6,600. (Actually the fees are more - there is an annual fee of $536 plus a $148 per foot of height which totals $7344 for this year, when the dam is holding back more than 15 acre feet of water.) Finnon has been held at the 50 acre feet level, maybe less. (Information about fees, and jurisdictional status was obtained from the State of California’s website - click HERE to see the information.)  Utilizing the State’s chart (lower left) Finnon appears to be in the green area as its dam is 46 feet in height and is holding more than 15 acre feet of water, or so we have been told.  The money for the fees comes from campsite rentals and some events the board holds on behalf of the entity that owns the lake. 19 campsites rented out for 20 days gives them the money. Yet Finnon remains at pond level rather than lake level.  

One must ask that if Finnon’s board is paying the State an annual fee then why isn’t it full?  They may elude to California’s drought. Finnon is located in El Dorado County. El Dorado County’s water agency is known as the EID.  The EID is supposed to fill the lake, for no fee, and was to do so when the dam was completed, now three years ago.  Presently EID has water available as they are selling water from their reserves to locations in other parts of the State, according to a local newspaper report. Therefore one would think water must be available! EID’s filling of Finnon doesn’t generate the EID any revenue, is that why the lake isn’t being filled?  Is it because the entity’s board can’t raise the money to pay the annual fees to the State? Why isn’t it filled yet?

It seems that if the entity’s board has to pay for anything over the 15 acre feet capacity and they have said it is being maintained at 50 acre feet then why not fill it all the way? Fees are based on dam size not the amount of water being held back once it impounds at a certain level. Are they paying the fees? Over the years local residents have provided ideas to raise money, made donations, have done fund raisers but yet things remain status quo.  Is part of the issue that those trying to help the board become ostracized by certain board members who seemingly can’t accept assistance? It happened to the finnonlake.com’s webmaster, and others, so who knows?  


Here’s hoping that Finnon Lake will have a future rather than evaporate into history.  

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Click  HERE for more weather.

Current weather at Finnon Lake - updates automatically every minute.

(Note: Above photos are not of Finnon Lake and are provided by weatherunderground.com)

As new photos of the lake become available we shall post them in this area.

Photos taken April, 2015

This selection shows some different views of the Finnon Lake Recreation Area.  Click on any to enlarge and then use the forward or back arrow to scroll through the selection. Top four and lower left are the newest taken in April, 2015.  Water level is about 28 feet deep at the dam’s face, lower the further you get from the dam.  See the photos below for an idea of what Finnon once was, and could be again.

Finnon Lake is close to so many activities……There are an additional array of activities which are nearby as well. The Eldorado National Forest (check out their camping areas as well); the Marshall gold discovery site / Sutter's Mill in Coloma; ATV trails in Georgetown; White water rafting on the South Fork of the American River; the Rubicon Trail for you Jeep fans; and the town of Placerville also known as "Old Hangtown." The oldest suspension bridge in California is nearby. The oldest, still operating, hardware store west of the Mississippi and oldest, still operating, newspaper west of the Mississippi are in Placerville as well. Come visit us and our neighbors, you'll enjoy the peace and quiet, as well as the activities. Click on the MAPS & ACTIVITIES page to see several additional things you may do while visiting the area.  AND - if you enjoy stargazing on a dark evening bring your telescope, or binoculars. The night sky can be unbelievably clear and dark.


For additional history of the immediate area surrounding the lake click HERE.


Click on any photo to enlarge and scroll through this set. The far left begins the series with a 1946 aerial view.  The lake should hopefully be back to a full level soon, but remember the area has been in a drought for four years.


Aerial photos courtesy USGS, all others courtesy www.eldoradorcd.org

FINNON PHOTOS THROUGH THE YEARS

FOR A SLIDE SHOW OF RECENT PHOTOS PRIOR TO THE RECONSTRUCTION PLEASE CLICK HERE.

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We are now in our sixth year and FinnonLake.com would like to say thank you to all the visitors to this website. To date we have had folks from 89 different countries view our  information, photos and videos. Click HERE to view a list of the countries our visitors come from. Again, thanks to all for your visit. Please note that  right clicking on an object to copy it has been disabled. If you want a copy of a photo, or information please contact the webmaster of this site.

PLEASE!   WHEN VISITING FINNON PLEASE BE SAFE WITH FIRE, MATCHES, BBQ’S, CIGARETTES, CAMPFIRES, or ANYTHING THAT CAN START or FUEL A FIRE.  

FIRE SAFETY IS 365 DAYS A YEAR!

The main purpose of this website has been to provide information on the Finnon Lake dam and lake restoration project.  Finnonlake.com would like to say thanks to the El Dorado County and Georgetown Divide Resource Conservation Districts (RCD)and the Sierra Nevada Conservancy (SNC) for all their efforts in making the dam restoration possible.  As of summer, 2014, the restoration project has been deemed complete.  The dam was replaced, fish habitats installed, fish restocked, a boat launch area installed, a boat wash station was completed, a new bridge over the dam’s spillway, new safety railing installed on the road over the dam, additional campsites created and a new concessionaire began business.  The only thing left for us to report on is the actual water level of the lake itself.  Presently it is at about 50 acre feet out of the potential 350 acre feet, yet fishing and the use of small boats can now be done.  If things change we’ll post it here.