Wednesday, May 3, 2023

The lake is looking good

 If it's not full, it's dam close.

I camped at Acorn East last weekend, and while site 102 has barely enough room for 1 tent, it offers an excellent view of the lake and surrounding hills, facing east. Lots of of geese families floating by on their way to Oak Knoll campground for breakfast.

I rode the trails both Saturday and Sunday mornings, and while some trails need pruning, I had a great time and really enjoyed getting out and rediscovering the joy of mountain biking. 💔

Here are a few pics. The first shot is the trail heading in to Oak Knoll campground. The biking/hiking trails begin at site 17, or look for the sign to the left the road leading to the Coyote Point group campsite.

Haven't seen the lake this full in years. Holly-lew-yah!

No better way to cap off a ride than heading to Brew'gers in Valley Springs for a burger and a chilled glass of Moose Drool. If you're into music, Fabulous Finds in VS has records & CDs for your browsing pleasure, at really reasonable prices. Lots more to look at there, too, it's a well-kept used everything antique-y store. It's on the main drag, Joe Bob says "check it out."

Tuesday, April 18, 2023

 Wow, an update, after all this time...

After all the rains we've had here in NorCal (2022/23), I'm anxious to see how the lake and trails are doing. I'll be camping up there in a few weeks in April, but until then, here's a report from Ktom300:

I used Strava Maps/segments to navigate and it worked surprisingly well.

I hit "oh Shit", 12 DH, Werewolf. Climbed Nut Up XC a few times as Mario Cart UH looked pretty unridden.
There's a lot in there and it's easy to get lost in the maze, I should've worn sleeves. Awesome views and the lake is full. Super green and flowers everywhere.

It's tight, def wear sleeves or bring the loppers.

Sunday, December 5, 2021

 Buddy Jim and I tried to escape the valley fog yesterday, and drove up to Hogan (where else?) to hike around. There was sunshine to be had, but as we were leaving, the fog began to show its hazy head. 

Great fun, not a soul to be seen on the trails, and the trails are in great shape. We saw one boat on the lake. The lake's low, but we thought it was going to be worse, actually.

Oak Knoll day use was closed, so we parked at the Acorn East day use lot and walked across the mud to get to the trailhead. We saw some tents in Acorn East, so camping is happening.

Most excellent meal was had at Brew'gers in Valley Springs, and we caught the last remnants of a car show. For you gun folks, there's a gun shop a few doors down from Brew'gers. 

Here're a couple of useful links for ye: Calaveras Visitors Bureau

7 Reasons To Visit Valley Springs (I'd add the awesome ACE Hardware store)


California Watchable Wildlife  

And don't miss the awesome River Of Skulls hiking trail below the dam!

Rain, dammit!

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

     Looks like camping will open at the beginning of May, woohoo! Use the link to get a site.

    See you there.😋

Sunday, March 14, 2021

Campgrounds still not open (3/14/21)

    I called today and the rangers said the campsites weren't open and no date was given for opening.

    Welp, you can still park in the day use and ride the trails, so all is not completely lost. Git up there & ride/hike in this beautiful (almost) spring weather!

    I got a call yesterday from a mole up at Hogan. There's been some encroachment/strip mining on one of our trails by a landowner, It's not a big deal, the trail is mostly intact, but someone(s) has been tearing down the NO TRESSPASSING signs. Loser. Ya wanna ruin this for everyone? Guys, the man is being cool about letting us ride near his property, let's not piss him off by destroying his signs, k? Don't make me stop this car, because I will come back there! 👿

    More Hogan info:

    Another MTBR thread:

Monday, November 30, 2020

 Just wanted to check in, see if anyone has ridden the trails lately. If you have, please leave a comment!

Here is a shot that shows all the trails: Google aerial shot

While mostly mountain bikers have been seen on the trails, it's also a great hiking/running trail. I want to reiterate that these trails are great in the winter. Not much mud, the area is very rocky, so wear your tough shoes!



Saturday, May 9, 2020

Hogan Lake facilities are closed

From the Sacramento District website: In the interest of the health and safety of the public, park volunteers, and our staff, we have closed our recreation facilities to protect against the spread of #COVID19. This includes campgrounds, visitor centers, boat launches, and day-use areas. Individuals with paid camping reservations will be contacted by email and full refunds will automatically be processed by with no cancellation fees.

Bummer. I was hoping to try out my new tent sometime soon, but looks like that's not gonna happen. Welp, enjoy this pic of Endo from the archives, all none of you. 🍺 Please, if you're reading this, please leave a comment. 

Ah, I thought I'd add this tidbit from the same site: The Corps of Engineers participates in the America the Beautiful-Federal Recreational Lands Pass Series. The series includes the Annual Pass, Annual 4th Grade Pass, Annual Senior Pass, Lifetime Senior Pass, Lifetime Access Pass, Volunteer Pass, and Military Pass. Be sure to pick up your America the Beautiful pass at any of our Corps parks as the money is directly invested back into the facilities to improve your recreational experience. Get more details about the pass series here

The Annual Pass is a onetime purchase of $80. You will have access to all of your favorite Corps parks, and participating federal agencies public lands. The Annual Pass is good for one year from the date of purchase.

Individuals 62 years and older have the choice of purchasing an Annual Senior Pass for $20 which is good for one year from the date of purchase, or a Lifetime Senior Pass for $80, which does not expire. Senior and Access Pass holders also receive a 50 percent discount on campsites at Corps-managed campgrounds.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers also sells their Corps Annual Pass for $40. The Corps Annual Pass gives unlimited access to day-use areas at any Corps park for one calendar year at the date of purchase.

The Lifetime Senior Pass is a helluva deal. 

The pic below shows the camp site I'll be shooting for when they're open. 😉