Lake Mendocino

Lake Mendocino
Lake Mendocino
Lake Mendocino from its northern shore
Location Mendocino County, California
Coordinates 39°12′N 123°11′W / 39.2°N 123.183°W / 39.2; -123.183Coordinates: 39°12′N 123°11′W / 39.2°N 123.183°W / 39.2; -123.183
Lake type reservoir
Primary inflows East Fork Russian River
Primary outflows East Fork Russian River[1]
Catchment area 105 sq mi (270 km2)[1]
Basin countries United States
Surface area 1,922 acres (7.78 km2)[1]
Max. depth 133 ft (41 m)
Water volume 122,400 acre·ft (0.1510 km3)[1]
Surface elevation 737.5 ft (224.8 m)

Lake Mendocino is a large reservoir in Mendocino County, California, northeast of Ukiah. It covers 1,922 acres (7.78 km2)[1] and was formed by the construction of Coyote Dam in 1958. The lake and dam provide flood control, water conservation, hydroelectric power, and recreation.[2]



Lake Mendocino is administered by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and offers disc golf, boating, water skiing, fishing, camping, and hiking.[2]

There are 300+ campsites plus a small number of boat-in only sites. Three groups of campsites are named in the Pomo language of the local native people.[3] Because of high demand, campsites must be reserved in advance.

There are two boat ramps, at the north and south ends of the lake, and use for watersports is permitted. The lake also has numerous day use and picnic areas. Several hiking trails traverse the length of the lake.

Coyote Dam

Coyote Dam (or Coyote Valley Dam) is an earthen dam 164 ft (50 m) high, 3,532 ft (1,077 m) long, and 20 ft (6 m) wide, with a total volume of 6,150,000 cu yd (4,700,000 m3). It was built as a flood control project by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Completed in 1959, it sits across the East Fork of the Russian River, which is the primary source of inflow to the lake.[1] The dam offers public access by foot.

Coyote Valley

Beneath the surface of the lake lies the old Coyote Valley. With the construction of the dam, the Army Corps had to relocate the residents of the valley, along with a short portion of State Route 20 which was subsequently innundated.


External links

See also

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