Virtual Guidebook to Mount Shasta and Klamath-Trinity Mountains
Shasta Lake
Whiskeytown Shasta-Trinity National Recreation Area California


Shasta Dam, built 1938-45, was the second of the big federal reclamation projects and is the keystone of the Central Valley Project. It is 620 feet high, impounds the Sacramento, McCloud, and Pit Rivers in a huge reservoir and produces hydroelectric power steadily throughout the year. The water it impounds and releases irrigates the Central Valley and ultimately also serves the cities of Southern California.

Shasta Lake is also a major recreational resource, swarming with power boats and dotted with houseboats. The water level drops all through the summer, leaving a barren "bathtub ring" of dried red mud. In drought years the lake level may be down hundreds of feet, so far in fact that the boat ramps and marinas lose contact with the water.



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The boat ramp at Antlers, Shasta Lake with high water level

(June 9, 2006)


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Low water in the summer of 2008 at the Antlers boat ramp

(August 18, 2008)


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On the shore of Shasta Lake at Bridge Bay Marina

(June 9, 2006)


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Houseboats docked at Bridge Bay on Shasta Lake

(June 9, 2006)


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Bridge Bay Marina with low water level summer 2008

(August 18, 2008)


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Low water level at Bridge Bay on Shasta Lake

(August 18, 2008)


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The "three Shastas" viewpoint - Shasta Dam, Shasta Lake, and Mount Shasta

(May 4, 2001)


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On the crest of Shasta Dam, key structure in the Central Valley Project

(May 4, 2001)


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