Lake Oroville Recreation

Boats, kayaks, and paddleboarders on Lake Oroville at sunset

Hundreds enjoy 4th of July water activities at the Forebay Aquatic Center in Oroville. July 2017/DWR

Lake Oroville State Recreation Area

Lake Oroville, located roughly 75 miles north of Sacramento and 100 miles south of Redding in Northern California, sits behind the tallest dam in the United States. The lake has more than 167 miles of shoreline and offers camping, picnicking, horseback riding, hiking, sail and power boating, water-skiing, fishing and swimming. It's a favorite destination for thousands of visitors each year.

Explore the drop-down menu below to find out more about existing resources around and below Lake Oroville. Some facilities and trails are closed due to ongoing spillway construction and temporary housing for Butte County residents impacted by the Camp Fire.

Please reference the Recreation Closures Map or call the Visitors Center for the most up-to-date information on openings and closures.

Interactive Map

Oroville Closure Area June 28, 2019

Click map to view expanded version. 

Lake Oroville Recreation Partner Agencies

California State Parks manages the Lake Oroville State Recreation Area, where you can find up-to-date information on weather, launch ramps and other activities at the lake, and make camping reservations, at ReserveCalifornia.

California Department of Fish and Wildlife operates the nearby Feather River Fish Hatchery and Oroville Wildlife Area. The hatchery website provides information on visiting hours and fish raised there. The wildlife area website contains information on recreation, hunting and history of the area. To inquire about a tour of the hatchery, call our Oroville Field Division at (530) 534-2306.

Along with State Parks, DWR operates the Lake Oroville Visitors Center (also known as Kelly Ridge Visitors Center). It features interpretive displays on Oroville Dam, area geology, wildlife and habitat, hydroelectric power and cultural and historical artifacts. An audio-visual room with on-request videos and a 47-foot viewing tower overlooking the dam and lake are added Visitor Center attractions.

Related Pages

Lake Oroville Shuttle Info

To improve access to available boat launching facilities while construction at the Lake Oroville spillways continues this summer, DWR and State Parks have partnered to offer passenger shuttles service from designated parking areas to operating boat launching facilities. Between mid-May and mid-September, shuttles will run at the following ramps:

  • Two shuttles at Bidwell Canyon
  • Two shuttles at Lime Saddle
  • One shuttle at Loafer Creek.  Note: the boat ramp becomes unusable at Loafer Creek when the lake drops below an elevation of 780 feet, at which time that shuttle will move to Bidwell Canyon for a total of 3 at Bidwell.

Schedules could change and are dependent on visitation and overall demand for shuttle services. 


Contact the Oroville Visitor Center  

(530) 538-2219
917 Kelly Ridge Rd.
Oroville, CA 95966