The following information tries to communicate the current lake level conditions. The unusually early Rains in October followed by heavy rain and snow in November and December did a good job of pushing the lake up significantly but we were well below normal for the January to April period. Although the lake can fill to the top in one season, it clearly will not do that this year. Unlike last year where the lake started dropping in early April, the lake did no hit its peak until late May this year. We have only dropped one foot in the last month. This compares to 9″ to a foot EVERY DAY as this time of the year. The current lake level is 121′ feet down. As outlined below, the lake will not drop as fast in 2022 and will end up about 30′ higher than last year. We expect conditions to be much better than 2021.
June 20, 2022 UPDATE
Lake has Dropped
Only ONE FOOT in Month!!
- BOAT RAMP OPEN (NEAR HOMES)
- NEW FULL REFUND GUARNATEE
- BOAT SLIPS AVAILABLE (NEAR HOMES)
- NO LAKE SPEED RESTRICTIONS NEAR HOMES
The Real GOOD NEWS is that the DAM is only letting out 25% of the normal flow out of the lake this summer. This makes a BIG difference in the lake level through the Summer. As a result, it will not drop as low as it did last year. Estimates are that it will stay about 30 feet above last year’s low. This 30′ increase will also help 2023 as we hope for a full lake. Although the lake last year was great still out in the main channels, the lake level impacts some of the access especially up some of the fingers of the lake.
If you look at the chart above, you will see that the blue (2022) line is still going up and you will see the green (2021) line started going down in early April. Based on information provided by the Dam, we have projected out the lake level for the rest of the year. The bottom line is that more water is coming into the lake and less is going out when compared to 2021.
If you are familiar with Shasta Lake, you know that at these levels, it may look low when you are up one of the fingers but in general, when you are in the larger main parts of the lake your boating experience is impacted very little. There is still more water than you will need or want for a week long stay. At 120′ down, the lake has still 200 miles of shoreline and is larger than most lakes in California when they are full. Even at 200′ feet down, there are boat ramps, open marinas and boat rentals. The low in 2022 is expected to be around 150′ in the fall.
SHASTA LAKE AT 120' DOWN still has 200 miles of shoreline!
Don Pedro, Lake Berryessa, and New Melones are all 30% to 50% smaller when they are FULL (they are not full!)
FOLLOW US ON INSTAGRAM OR FACEBOOK FOR DAILY UPDATES an LOTS OF PHOTOS
SUGARLOAF & LAKEHEAD
LOCAL BOAT RAMP:
OPEN! OPEN! OPEN!
UPDATE: EXPECT IN FULL OPERATION THE ENTIRE SUMMER. FULL REFUND IF THAT CHANGES.
The Sugarloaf county boat ramp is OPEN. The curtesy dock is in place to help. The photo above was taken May 1, 2022 and the lake is higher now. This is one of the better ramps at Shasta with a Double wide, all asphalt and 2 wheel drive no issues. Based on current lake level, inflows and DAM release plans it is estimated that the Boat Ramp at Sugarloaf which is in view of our homes will be in FULL OPERATION for the ENTIRE SUMMER. See our NEW GUARANTEE that will offer a FULL REFUND if we are wrong and they close it for your stay.
VIEW FROM HOMES:
The view from the homes is different currently from when it is full. It is now a mixture of lake and dry lake bed. Retreat 3 and Retreat 4 have the best view but Retreat 1, 2, and 5 can all see the lake. Be careful as most homes that claim to be lakefront, are not at 120′ down. Many of them, you can not see any water. In our case, the view is more limited, but still there and still great views of the mountains and the wildlife like deer also. These homes are still very popular even with the low lake level as they offer so much. We continue to get 5 star reviews and guests looks forward to coming back as we try to be very transparent about the lake level on our web site, emails, welcome document, rental agreement and other materials.
WALK TO LAKE:
150- 200 yards currently from the 5 homes on the lake (R1-R5).
SWIMMING AT LAKE NEAR HOMES:
At the current lake level, you can swim in the lake below our R1-R5 homes. As always do not leave children alone and make sure they are wearing a life vest anywhere near the water even if they are not going in. Water temperature on May 29, 2022 was 71-73 degrees and should continue to climb. Summer water temperatures range from 80 to 90 degrees.
Floating Island is now in Place for Summer 2022 Enjoyment.
OPEN! OPEN! OPEN!
This is located near our homes in SUGARLOAF Area. They moved it back on May 1st. The photo was when the were still working on it. This marina is a very short drive and a longer walk.
This larger marina is in the Sugarloaf area when the lake is too low to put it up by their campgrounds 3 miles north (current case). Although their slips are here to be rented, their house boats, rental boats and gas are still near Centimundi boat ramp near the dam.
They are renting the slips for $30 per night or $300 per month. They will book up quickly so make sure you reserve as early as possible. (530)238-2553 If you learn anything new please let us know.
Although they have an incentive to leave them there as long as they can, we can’t control what they do. We expect they will be there at least through July and maybe August and beyond. They said they will take it month by month.
Currently CLOSED for the season. Normally opens Memorial Day Weekend and stays open to Labor Day. Due to the low lake level last fall, they moved the dock into deeper water. We recently (April 18th) got a response from the owners at Jones Valley, that they do not intend to bring it back this year (2022). It is expected it will return next year assuming we get more rain. Although the water is deep enough currently to bring it back, my guess this decision was made because they did not want to have to move it out of the area again in the fall. We have no additional information, but based on this, I would plan on no Sugarloaf marina this year.
FULL REFUND DETAILS
June 20, 2022: Although it is a shame that the lake is not full, we want more of our guests to enjoy the lake and feel comfortable that you will have a boat ramp next to our homes. Based on the latest projections, we are pleased to let people know we do NOT expect the boat ramp to close this year during the summer.
If you book with us at any of our homes, we will offer a FULL REFUND if the estimates are wrong and they close the boat ramp near our home anytime between now and the end of September.
Hopefully you will now book with confidence.
You will be offered a full refund, credit for future stay or discount (your choice) if ramp is closed and can’t be used.
Note: This applies to the boat ramp, not boat slips as I can’t get a commit out of Antlers but expect they will have them there through at least July.
USE OF LAKE
OTHER OPEN MARINAS:
The following are full service marinas with gas, rental boats, store, etc.
- Shasta Marina at Packers Bay (Closest)
- Bridge Bay (near the big bridge)
- Holiday Harbor
- Jones Valley
- Antlers at Centimundi
Since there will not be gas on the lake near Sugarloaf, you will need to fill up in Lakehead on a trailer or travel to Shasta Marina or Bridge Bay. These will likely be in the area you will spend most of the day anyway for water sports.
ATVs & 4WD & EXPLORING:
The lower lake levels open up old treasures covered by water since the 1940’s. This includes old bridges, tunnels and much more. Great for exploring on foot, ATV or 4WD. Great fun on ATVs! See the “Lake Treasures” section of web site. Please note that many of these things are now covered as the lake has come up somewhat.
Although we can only provide information based on what we hear and see, we try to be as transparent as possible to help our guests plan and make decisions and avoid surprises. It is very hard to predict what the lake level will be in 2023. Normally the lake is the highest in late May and then starts to drop throughout the Summer and Fall.
CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING:
- Since we tend to book up early especially for the summer, consider booking as soon as possible for next year and keep an eye on this section of our web site as we will update it as we have new information. Most of our bookings for 2023 will take place between June 2022 and February 2023.
- You can always cancel for full refund up to 60 days before independent of what Airbnb or VRBO may say. We will approve a full refund outside of 60 days.
- Feel free to reach out at any time.
- We will update this every two weeks or sooner.
NOTE: WE CAN NOT BE HELD LIABLE FOR THE INFORMATION WE PROVIDE. PLEASE DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH.
SHASTA IS A RESERVOIR
Shasta has filled close to the top 4 of the 6 past years. Shasta Lake is not only the largest lake in California, it is also the main reservoir for much of the rich crops in the central valley of the state. As with other reservoirs, the lake level will vary through the year. Normally the lake is at its lowest level in November or December before the rains and then increases to its highest level normally by Memorial Day each year after which it slowly drops through the summer/fall/early winter. Although the lake might look low in some of the fingers, the main parts of the lake still have plenty of water for a great week on the lake even at 200′ feet down.
One good wet season can fill up the lake even when it is very low.
IMPORTANT: Please read the Blue Section before this section as it will provide you the current information.
Above photos above were taken in the large part of the Sacramento Arm of the lake on June 20 at 121' down.
SUGARLOAF & LAKEHEAD AREA (NEAR OUR HOMES)
Although four of homes are rare lakefront, the distance from each home might go from a stone’s toss to several hundred yards or more. In severe drought conditions the result can be an empty lake bed below our homes with only the Sacramento river running through it. In the past 7 years since we purchased Retreat 1 this happened only one time. This was last year when in mid August the marinas moved out of the area. This is expected again later this Summer (Aug or Sept). Fortunately, unlike many homes on inlets of Shasta Lake, we almost always have some water and water views in front of us even at its lowest levels.
One good wet season can fill up the lake even when it is very low. We take pride in being very transparent and communicating current and potential conditions as best we can.
Lake at 100' to 140' down (May 29th it was 120' from the top)
At 100 feet below the top, Antlers and Sugarloaf Marinas are normally open and in full seasonal operation below our homes as well as the Sugarloaf county low water boat ramp. Please note when the lake is full, Antlers marina is 3 miles up the lake but at this water level, they normally move their marina to the Sugarloaf area providing you two marinas close by and within sight of five of the homes. The walk/drive is longer but still all in view. The first set of photos below are of the Sugarloaf area at this depth range and the later photos are of the lake in the main channel. Please note that these photos range from 100 to 140 feet down so they can look very different as 40′ fills in a lot.
Latest Update: Please see other section (to the left if desktop, above if mobile) about the marinas and boat ramps.
LOWER LAKE at 50 to 100' down (NOT CURRENT LEVEL)
At 60′ to 100′ below the top, the Sugarloaf County Boat ramp is open and the Sugarloaf marina is normally in full operation (Summer Only). At about 80′ down, Antlers also moves their marina to this area giving you two marinas near the homes. Views of the lake change and the distance to the marinas and boat ramps are greater than when the lake is full. The photos below are a combination of local and main lake conditions.
Full to 60' Down (NOT CURRENT LEVEL)
When the lake is within this range (considered pretty full or full), the Sugarloaf marina is a short walk from the homes and the boat ramp at the marina is open. 5 of the last 6 seasons were in this range with 4 of those years full to the top. Decent winters can fill Shasta Lake quickly. Please see photos below.
Lake at 140' to 170' down from Top (NOT CURRENT LEVEL)
At 140′ below the top, the lake level starts to impact the marinas and the boat ramp near our homes. Although they may stay open to 150′ or more, please plan on driving to other ramps and marinas when the lake gets to this level. Bay Bridge Marina and Boat Ramp for example is easy to get to but you will have about a 18 minute drive. See marina section of web site for more information. The main part of the lake is much deeper and there is lots of water for your enjoyment. No issues at all, still bigger than most lakes in California when full. The photos below are of the area near our homes and the later ones are out in the main lake.
Lake Level at 170 feet or more from top (NOT CURRENT LEVEL)
At 170′ down or greater, the area near our homes is a dry lake bed with the Sacramento river running through it. This is a great opportunity to explore and look for buried treasures on feet or on your ATVs. If you have an ATV…bring it! There are old tunnels, bridges, roads and much more. See our low lake treasures section of our web page. Since it is the bottom of the lake, there is silt near the river. Gray dry silt is ok to drive and walk on but if the silt is black, do not proceed as you will get stuck. Although the view is very different than a full lake, our guests continue to visit and have a great time. The first set of photos below is the area near our homes. The later photos are in the deeper main part of the lake which still offers great water sports and family enjoyment. At this level there is no marina or boat ramps close to the home. This has happened only once since we bought Retreat one 7 years ago. This was in the Fall of 2021. This is expect again in 2022 later in the Summer/Fall.
June 2019 FULL LAKE