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Potters Point Loop-Eagle Nesting

Lake Oroville SRA
id_3592371

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Rating: 4 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Moderate
Length: 5.2 miles
Duration: 1-3 hours
Family Friendly

Overview :  Easily the first landmark one encounters at Lake Oroville SRA is the truly massive dam overlooking the town of Oroville. It is also... more »

Tips:  Location-Directions
From Highway 70, take the Highway 162 exit (Oroville Dam Blvd.) and proceed East. Continue bearing east as Highway... more »

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Points of Interest

1. Park Entrance to Visitors Center

Lake Oroville SRA's Visitor Center is located in a hilltop subdivision overlooking much of the lake. As far as State Park Visitor's Centers go, this is a large and well appointed one!

Lake Oroville was completed in 1967 with the construction of the nation's tallest earthen dam (770 feet) across the Feather River. This lake is part of the larger... More

2. Trailhead

The trail head lis located in the northeast corner of the major parking area and boat ramp at the northerly end of the dam. Look for the shoreline picnic area,area; the trail is at the extreme left end at the base of the hill.

Note, there is no shade in the parking lot.

It's a mile drive across the dam and the views down toward Oroville and... More

More
3. Bench

A shaded bench with broken views across the lake and a trail down to the shoreline.

The paved segment of the trail ends here.

4. Junction

The side trail heads across the hill with its far end at a cul-de-sac just outside the paid parking area entrance. The trail is marked as "Mixed Use" on the park's maps.

Potters Ravine becomes a mixed use trail.

5. View

Approaching the northerly end of the bay views start opening up down its length and out toward the dam and boat ramp.

Oaks and scrub are the predominant vegetation providing broken shade. The trail has been gentle up and down undulations.

6. View

Somewhat more expansive views out across the lake and dam.

7. Mile Post 1.0

Marker post.

8. Bench

The trail leaves the bay and heads inland through an oak and grassland valley.

I was struck by the realization that here were the lands that Ishi, the last surviving member of the Yana Indians lived when he made his introduction to the world back in the early 1900's. If you grew up in California and were in grade school in the 60's-70's, you... More

9. Junction

"Potters Ravine Trail" and "Cut Across" to "North Fork Trail".

Follow the "Cut Across" north up the shallow oak and grasslands valley. We will return via "Potters Ravine". The initial trail is moderately steep.

The barbed range fence is the park boundary.

There will be some interesting rock... More

10. Junction

4-Way Junction. Gate to private property and road, posted for no trespassing. "Cut Across", "North Fork Trail", and "Potters Ravine".

Follow Potters Ravine East.

North Fork will continue out to the next bay, over 4 miles round trip.

11. Junction

Junction Dead Cow Ravine and Potters Ravine Trails. See WP 26.

The forest cover opens up. Bench at this junction.

Continue along the Potters Ravine Trail, the Eagle Nesting area will be up ahead through a gate. Tree cover will continue to be oak and grasslands with pine becoming common.

This gate and trail closes seasonally (January-August)... More

12. Mile Post 3.5

3.5 Mile Post located at the easterly edge of a meadow.

13. Nest

Look to the Northeasterly off the trail for dead treetops in this area for nests. There are not many nests visible from the trail in this refuge but a sharp eye will catch them.

14. Start of Downgrade

In general, there has been a steady but gentle upgrade to this point. The pine forest cover thickens but periodic nests will still be visible.

The trail becomes more gravely, watch the footing.

15. Mile Post 3.0

3.0 Mile Post.

Steady downhill grade. Manzanita, grasslands, and oak forest.

16. Gate- Entrance to Eagle Nesting Area

Easterly gate to the Eagle's nesting area. Visible ahead will be the next trail junction.

17. Junction

3-way Junction, hitching post and bench.

Head downhill on the Potters Point Trail. This last portion to the point can get steep. We will return here later and continue on Potters Ravine to the southeast along the lakeshore.

Start a gentle upgrade to travel along the ridgline.

18. Summit

The first of two summits. Double track trail, suitable for Park ATV's.

19. Second Summit

Second summit, starting to get lake views. The trail will start a steep downgrade to the lake shore.

20. Point and Picnic Spot.

A well shaded picnic bench next to the lake's highwater line.

21. End of Point

The end of the point (this season). Just offshore is a small island. Google Earth imagry has the island and extension of this spit.

This season it would be easily walkable or swimable.

There's a little broken glass along the shoreline. It might be a good idea to wear foot protection if swimming here.

When done, head back up the trail.

22. Is it Archeology or Simply a Historic Trash Pile

Old rusted cans by the hundreds to the south just off the trail. There are only a few sizes, none with surviving labeling. Scattered about are shattered porcelain bowls and a few twisted enameled metal objects.

An old seasonal hunting or work camp predating the lake?

23. Return to Junction: WP 17

Head South onto the Potters Ravine Trail heading around the hill. The trail will generally hold elevation while dropping somewhat down toward the lake through mixed forest.

There will be occasional broken views of the lake below. Up ahead near Mile Post 2.5 will be a shallow gully. During the rains this could become the spot of a nice little... More

24. Mile Post 2.5

The trail continues to generally follow the contours through broken forest.

25. Mile Post 2.0

Gully and dogleg then Mile Post 2.0.

26. Junction

Dead Cow Ravine will head up and over the peninsula to the Junction at WP 11.

Continue through Potters Ravine Trail along the lake. The trail will start loosing elevation as it approaches the lakeshore this next segment.

27. Viewpoint

Through the trees a nice vista of the lake with a gentle slope that will allow access to the shore through the woods.

28. A Beach

A large and easily accessed dirt beach on Lake Oroville. There is a bench just off trail with a view out over the lake toward the dam.

29. Driftwood Cove

Connected to the last beach around the point, this sheltered cove is easy to access. It also appears to be a collection point for driftwood found out on the lake (navigation hazards).

30. A Picnic Bench Overlooking the Lake

A lone picnic bench beside the trail. Nicely shaded with a gentile slope down to the lake.

Trail will start gaining elevation.

31. Mile Post 1.5

32. Junction: Return to WP 9

Returning on the trail in from the parking area.

33. Return to Trailhead

END