Sequoia Lake, California, USA

Lake Locations:

USA - West - California - High Sierra -

Sequoia Lake is a recreational lake on private land within Kings Canyon National Park in Fresno County, California. Part of the High Sierra Region, Sequoia Lake is a great place for camping, boating, fishing, swimming, and hiking. With its close proximity to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, visitors of Sequoia Lake will have many outdoor activities to keep them occupied.

Sequoia Lake was created in 1890 by impounding Mill Flat Creek. The purpose of the dam was to create a flume for logging. Although the lake was owned by several logging companies, the Sequoia Lake Conference of the YMCA has operated camps along the shores since 1912. In 1922, the land and lake were sold with a clause stating the property should not be used for any purpose except to carry out the work of the YMCA, or the property would revert to the heirs of the previous owners. There are several camps located on Sequoia Lake that are all run by the YMCA, and can be enjoyed by the general population.

Lake Sequoia is a great place to fish. Anglers can take pleasure in reeling in largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, spotted bass, catfish, and crappie. Fishing enthusiasts can choose to bank fish or bring a boat that they can launch at a boat ramp located on the lake. Nature lovers will find Sequoia Lake the perfect starting point for a vacation to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Visitors of Sequoia Lake are permitted to hike from the lake to a trail that leads to the Kings Canyon National Park. There is also the Sequoia Lake Overlook Trail that starts from the General Grant Tree parking area and then meanders through the forest to a picturesque overlook of Sequoia Lake. The trail passes the Dead Giant, a large sequoia tree assumed to have died by human intervention many years ago. There is evidence of axe marks that severed the cambium tree layer, preventing nutrients from moving up the tree.

Visitors of Lake Sequoia will want to visit Grant Grove located in Kings Canyon National Park. Grant Grove is home to the General Grant Tree, named in 1867 after Union Army general Ulysses S. Grant who became the 18th President of the United States in 1869. In 1926 President Calvin Coolidge designated General Grant Tree the “Nation’s Christmas Tree,” and in 1956 President Dwight D. Eisenhower proclaimed it a “National Shrine” as a living memorial to all men and women of the United States who gave their lives in service to their country. Visitors will also enjoy Giant Forest located in Sequoia National Park. The Giant Forest is one of the largest sequoia groves and home to the General Sherman Tree, which is the largest, single-trunked living tree in the world. The enormous trees will intrigue nature lovers as they stroll through the groves. In the winter months, both national parks become a sports wonderland with plenty of places for cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, snowboarding, ice-skating, and snow tubing.

There are so many options for overnight accommodations around and near Sequoia Lake. Guests can enjoy lakeside campgrounds or cabins and lodges located in Grant Grove Village in Kings Canyon National Park. With the metropolitan city of Fresno also located in close proximity, those who like less rustic accommodations can find vacation rentals, bed and breakfasts, and numerous hotels to meet their needs. While staying overnight in Fresno visitors can take time to sightsee and shop. Some visitors may find Fresno to be an excellent place to call home, and will find abundant real estate awaiting new owners.

Sequoia Lake is a great place to visit for a weekend getaway or even a longer retreat. Because the lake is private, visitors must make reservations through the YMCA Sequoia Lake. Once your family experiences the beauty of the area, you will be eager to return for more.

Things to do at Sequoia Lake

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Boating
  • Swimming
  • Tubing
  • Camping
  • Campground
  • Cabin Rentals
  • Hiking
  • Ice Skating
  • Snowboarding
  • Cross-Country Skiing
  • Snowshoeing
  • National Park

Fish species found at Sequoia Lake

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Catfish
  • Crappie
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Smallmouth Bass
  • Spotted Bass

Sequoia Lake Photo Gallery

Sequoia Lake Statistics & Helpful Links

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Lake Type: Artificial Reservoir, Dammed

Water Level Control: Golden State YMCA

Surface Area: 77 acres

Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 5,341 feet

Completion Year: 1890

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Trophic State | LakeLubbers

Trophic State measures the level of algae and nutrients in a lake.

An oligotrophic lake is very clear (blue in color) and does not support much plant or fish life. A hyper-oligotrophic lake is the clearest of all lakes, and is nearly devoid of plants and fish.

A mesotrophic lake is slightly green and supports a moderate degree of plant and fish life. A lake's most desired trophic state is generally this mid-point - the mesotrophic state.

A eutrophic lake is somewhat murky and supports a large amount of plant and fish life. A hypereutrophic lake is clouded with algae, plant life, and fish life. A eutrophic or hyper-eutrophic lake can be difficult to navigate by boat - and is often an unpleasant place to swim.

The use of phosphorus-rich and nitrogen-rich fertilizer on lawns and golf courses surrounding a lake can cause it to become eutrophic or hypereutrophic.


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Catchment or Drainage Area | LakeLubbers

This is the surrounding area that drains into a lake, including land, rivers and their tributaries. This is also known as the lake's "catchment basin".

Small lakes at the highest peaks of mountains have small drainage areas. The world's oceans have the largest drainage areas.


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Lake-Area Population | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated number of people who live in a house with a view of a lake, plus those who self-describe the lake as their home, for example: "I live at Smith Mountain Lake."


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Water Residence Time | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated time that it takes for an amount of water equal to the entire volume of a lake to flow out of - or evaporate from - the lake.

Residence Time can be as short as a few days for fast-flowing small lakes, and can exceed 100 years for slow-flowing large lakes.


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Completion Year | LakeLubbers

This is the year that a reservoir was first filled to the reservoir's normal elevation - or the year that a natural lake was first dammed. A large reservoir can take more than a year to fill after its dam is first closed.

The Grand Anicut in southern India is generally considered the world's oldest dam that still operates. Grand Anicut was constructed in the second century BC. It now impounds an irrigation network that includes roughly one million acres.

You can find many of the the world's newest reservoirs on LakeLubbers. Many of the world's oldest reservoirs appear on the last page of that list.


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Water Volume | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated volume of water that a lake contains -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. By this measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal.

You can find many of the the world's largest lakes (by water volume) on LakeLubbers.

Water Volume can be measured in acre-feet, in cubic miles, or in cubic kilometers. One acre-foot is the amount of water needed to cover one acre (43,560 square feet) to a depth of one foot. One cubic mile equals 3,379,200 acre-feet. One cubic kilometer equals 810,713 acre-feet.

1 acre-foot is equal to 325,851 US gallons. Siberia's Lake Baikal contains about 6,276,367,740,000,000 gallons of freshwater - nearly 1 million gallons for every living person on earth.

The other - and more widely used - measure of a lake's size is the lake's surface acreage. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is North America's Lake Superior.


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Maximum Depth | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated greatest depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. The world's deepest lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal; that lake's maximum depth is estimated at 5,314 feet.

You can find many of the the world's deepest lakes on LakeLubbers. If you select the last page of that list, you will find the (maximum depth of) the shallowest lakes in our database.


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Average Depth | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated average depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. If the water volume and surface area of a lake are known, an estimate of the lake's average depth can be calculated:

Water volume ÷ Surface Area = Average Depth

Example: 1,000,000 acre-feet ÷ 20,000 acres = 50 feet average depth


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Maximum Elevation | LakeLubbers

This is a lake's highest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can occur during flooding. A lake's highest possible maximum elevation is usually the top of the lake's dam or spillway.

At lakes that include residential development, government regulations usually forbid the construction of homes below a lake's maximum elevation.


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Minimum Elevation | LakeLubbers

This is a lake's lowest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can be reasonably expected to occur. Low lake levels can occur due to deliberate seasonal draw downs for irrigation or impending snow melt, reduced water inflows, drought and evaporation, residential or commercial water demands, and hydropower generation.

Some lakes' minimum and maximum elevations are virtually the same. Lakes that generate hydropower may vary by several feet - according to power demand. Lakes whose primary purpose is to prevent flooding can seasonally vary by 100 feet or more.

When some lakes reach their minimum elevation, their boat ramps may not be long enough to permit boat access - and boats docked on shallow parts of the lake may end up on dry ground. In those cases, kayakers and shore-based anglers may be among the few happy recreational users of the lake.


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Normal Elevation | LakeLubbers

This is a lake's normal water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level. For a reservoir, this water level is also known as "full pond" or "full pool".

You can find many of the world's highest-elevated lakes on LakeLubbers. Lakes with the lowest elevations (known by LakeLubbers) are shown on the final page of that list.


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Shoreline Length | LakeLubbers

This is the length of the exterior shoreline around a lake - measured at the lake's normal elevation. The shoreline length can be considerably shorter or longer when lake water levels are lower or higher than normal.

A lake with many coves has a much longer shoreline than a lake of similar surface area that is nearly circular in shape.

When known, the shoreline miles that we report in our statistics include only the lake's exterior shoreline, and exclude the shorelines of islands located within a lake's boundaries. In lakes with many islands, those islands' combined shorelines may exceed a lake's exterior shoreline.

You can find many of the world's longest-shoreline lakes on Lakelubbers.


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Surface Area | LakeLubbers

This is the area (acreage, square kilometers, etc.) of the top surface area of a lake - measured at a lake's normal elevation. The surface area can be considerably smaller or larger when lake levels are lower or higher than normal. North America's Lake Superior is the world's largest freshwater lake by this measure.

The other measure of a lake's size is the lake's water volume. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Lake Baikal in Siberia.

You can find many of the world's largest lakes (acres) on Lakelubbers. There is no widely-accepted minimum surface area that defines a lake. What Lakelubbers describes as a lake, you might call a pond. The smallest lake that Lakelubbers currently includes is Hawaii's 2-acre Lake Waiau.


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Water Level Control | LakeLubbers

This is the organization that controls water releases or outflows from the lake or reservoir. In the USA, this is often the US Army Corps of Engineers, a power company, a municipal water system, an irrigation district, or a paper manufacturing company. In the case of private or gated lakes, a homeowners' association may be the lake's controlling authority.

Many lakes cross borders, including North America's Great Lakes. The control of such lakes and their coveted freshwater may be amicably shared - or hotly disputed.

"Water wars" continue at many lakes as growing populations and crop irrigation needs compete for the freshwater that lakes contain.


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Lake Type | LakeLubbers

There are 3 basic types of lakes that are currently included on LakeLubbers. 2 types may be dammed or not dammed, producing 5 classifications.

- A Reservoir is a man-made freshwater lake that is usually created by damming rivers.

- A Natural Freshwater Lake occurs naturally - often by glacial activity - and has a salinity of less than 30 parts per thousand. It may be dammed to produce electricity or for other reasons.

- A Natural Saltwater Lake occurs naturally and has a salinity of more than 30 parts per thousand (ppt). It may be dammed.

"Brackish" water may be categorized as freshwater or saltwater, depending on its salt content (salinity). Oligohaline water has less than 15 ppt of salt. Mesohaline water has 15-29 ppt. Polyhaline has 30-335 ppt.


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