Fish and boat on the largest lake in the Stanislaus National Forest. Cherry Lake is just outside of Yosemite’s borders. Cherry Lake and a large section of the forest has been closed since the Rim Fire began in August 2013. An update on other open camping areas is here. River Ranch Campground off of Buchanan Road/Fish Hatchery Road is open, but the forest roads beyond it are closed. Normally Cherry Lake is open all year, perfect for summer recreation, with road access subject to winter closures. Cherry Lake visitors can enjoy an uncrowded lake perfect for water sports, swimming, fishing and hiking. The day use area is on the West side of Cherry Valley Dam with a boat ramp and a designated swim area.
Cherry lake is fed by the North, East and West forks of Cherry Creek. They begin in the Emigrant Wilderness and all of them flow roughly southwest. The water from the lake (reservoir) powers the Dion R. Holm hydroelectric facility power plant. It was built by San Francisco as part of the Hetch Hetchy Project, which supplies drinking water to San Francisco. The City and County of San Francisco holds the rights to the water stored in Cherry Lake, human contact with the water is allowed because the water is filtered.
Cherry Lake is at an elevation of 4,700 feet.
(Closed) From Groveland Ranger District Office head east on Highway 120 approximately 5 miles, turn left on Cherry Lake Road; follow Cherry Lake Road 20 miles to Cherry Lake. Cherry Lake Road is a narrow, steep and winding paved route where safe travel speeds average 20-30 mph. (Closed) The Lake is also accessible by going through Tuolumne city by way of Buchanan Road/Fish Hatchery Road to Forest Roads.
|Groveland Ranger District
24545 Highway 120
Groveland, CA 95321
|Summer Hours (Apr – Aug)
M-Sun: 8:00am to 3:30pm
Winter Hours (September – March)
M-F: 8:00am to 4:30pm Sat: 8:00am – 3:30pm
|Phone: (209) 962-7825
TDD: (209) 962-6406
Fax: (209) 962-7412