Whiskeytown Lake’s crystal-clear water is perhaps the most recognized feature of the park. However, water-based recreation is only a part of what the 42,000-acre preserve has to offer. Visit waterfalls, hike through rugged mountains, explore California Gold Rush history, and observe post-fire ecology in action.
Explore Whiskeytown National Recreation Area
Located in northern California, near the city of Redding, Whiskeytown National Recreation Area was established on November 8, 1965. The park gets its name from a gold rush–era camp town that is now submerged in Whiskeytown Lake, a 3,200-acre reservoir formed by Whiskeytown Dam on Clear Creek, which is the center of the area. Visitors can swim, kayak, sail, and fish in the clear water. The area is home to 70 miles of hiking trails and includes four waterfalls to explore. In 2018, the Carr Fire burned 39,000 of the park’s 42,000 acres. Though the fire was 83% contained within less than a month, several NPS housing units and other structures were destroyed in the fire. Today, Whiskeytown researchers are studying the effects of fire and fire recovery on ecosystems, and the area continues to be a place where people can connect with the outdoors and create important memories.
Kids in Parks
National parks are places where kids can dream up great adventures! Taking in amazing scenery. Testing out new skills. Exploring places kids may have only heard about. But most importantly, creating new memories with friends and family.
What’s Happening at This Park?
Stories from all parks
Our public lands are our public commons. They belong to all of us as part of our natural and cultural heritage. They remind us of a larger world that has existed long before the arrival of humans and will survive long after we are gone. –Terry Tempest Williams, Author & Conservationist
Bring the Parks Home
When you can’t get to a national park for a visit, experience it from the comfort of your home. WNPA’s online store is packed with ranger-approved park collectibles, books, toys, and clothing. Shop for a special item.