Now Hiring at Putah Canyon Campground!

Positions offered: Office Assistant and Security

Currently we are looking for people with a positive attitude to assist in our campground office. This position includes answering phone calls, making reservations, and checking people in at our front office. No experience is required! Part time and Full time are both available.

We are also looking for Security to work on weekends and must have a Guard Card.

Due to our 10 year contract we have added more sites, and are in the process on expanding and adding facilities.

Please email at putah@royalelkparkmanagement.com if interested or have any questions regarding these positions.


New Regional Data Web Page from Doug Kunst

Doug took the time to create a web pag of links to real-time fire watch cameras and weather data for our region. The photos and charts are updated regularly. You can see the update time in the lower right of the camera view.


Berryessa Peak Fire Cam

This is the view from the camera on Berryessa Peak at 11AM this morning.



One of my Facebook posts last week created some interest in the old Putah Creek Stone Bridge which is underwater at about 150 feet down (depending on the lake level). I updated the story of the 2012 scuba dive to the bridge including an 8 minute video describing the search for the bridge and the dive down to it. 

See the story and video here…


Or go to this link to see a similar version on You Tube:


Pope Valley Repair 2020


April Fools' Day, April Fool's Month,

or Ten Years of Lake Berryessa News April Fool's Issues

As many of you know, I enjoy writing my April Fool's edtions. The first one was published on April 1, 2009. I just created an archive of the Lake Berryessa News April Fool's stories and a compilation of all the April Fool's editions from 2009 - 2021. They are available to read and download on the Lake Berryessa News website.


Best of April Fool's Stories (2009 - 2021)

Full April Fool's Issues (2009 to 2021)

April Fool's Day Lake Berryessa News Master Story List

Alligators in Lake Berryessa

Dowsers in the Highlands

Floating Golf Course

Floating Indian Casino

Glory Hole: Black Hole, Wormhole, Danger Zone?

Glory Hole Senior Center Bus

Grass-Fed People to Replace Grass-Fed Beef

Indoor Ski Hill

iResorts® at the Lake

Meat Grapes & Steak Potatoes

Miniature Game Fishing

People Becoming REALLY Green to Help Our Planet

Raise the Dam, Raise the Hole, Lower the Hole, Cork the Hole?

Slower Than the Speed of Light - The Physics of Slow Glass

Solano County Water Agency CORKs Glory Hole

Tesla’s Quantum Tachyon Mirror

Triploid Trout - Big & Smart

USB Wine Delivery Is Here

Vermigen: Composting with BIG Worms

Weather Radar & Fish Finder

Ziplining Berryessa Peak


Lake Level and Temperature, 4/17/21

Lake Berryessa levels are dropping about one inch per day. The level is now 416.0 feet, 24 feet below Glory Hole. Surface temperatures hit 70 degrees this week.

A year ago the lake was at 432.2 feet, 7.8 feet below Glory Hole.

Glory Hole 041421
Lake Temps 041521


The First Print Edition Since October, 2020 Has Been Published

April 1, 2021: Click Icon Below to Download Full PDF

LBNews Pg 8&1 Apr21


Napa County In, Reclamation Out!

The Napa County Request for Proposal (RFP) process appears to be proceeding smoothly. Although, per policy, the County has released no public information regarding the bids which have been submitted, optimism remains strong.

Per the Managing Partner Agreement (MPA) between Napa County and the Bureau of Reclamation: “the United States and Napa County have agreed that entering into a Managing Partner Agreement may provide better opportunities for public recreational enjoyment.” and “the parties hereto mutually agree to enter into a Management Agreement for the administration, operation, maintenance and development of public recreation facilities, protection of natural and cultural resources, and provision of public health and safety at these areas.”

The MPA clearly places the major responsibility for the success of this process on Napa County. Napa County has clearly accepted this responsibility, dedicating staff and resources, and is aggressively moving forward to guarantee success. The County process brings internal consistency, dedication to a goal, and clear lines of authority. And most of all, the County and its staff actually want to succeed!

What could possibly go wrong? 

In my opinion, the Bureau of Reclamation could go wrong.

The biggest concern I have, based on 20 years of experience, is that the Bureau of Reclamation, especially its local management, will attempt to exert external control on this County-led project. The MPA was created specifically to remove the Bureau of Reclamation from managing the resorts. 

The BOR, which has a limited budget and staff, is still responsible for managing the other government recreational facilities and four of the existing resorts: Oak Shores, Smittle Creek, Capell Launch Ramp, Eticuera, Putah Canyon RecArea, Markley Cove Resort, Pleasure Cove Marina, and Berryessa Point RecArea (closed). That should keep them busy.

The County is the lead agency with access to the host of the professional resort management resources of the Napa Valley. The Bureau of Reclamation has little experience in this field and no local staff resources that can match the County’s depth of available support through Visit Napa Valley, for example.

The BOR is acting in an advisory role for the MPA process. Although the County is required to submit specific MPA-defined requests to the BOR “for its review and approval, Reclamation shall not unreasonably delay or withhold such approval.”

Napa County In, Reclamation Out!


Banning Louise


A Little Bit O' Philosophy Helps the Satire Go Down...

This is my favorite issue of the year because it allows me to exprss some of my opinions without being too offensive. Sometimes satire is so close to reality that the joke simply escapes the uneducated and ignorant. And satire usually escapes the profoundly stupid. How can someone understand a joke about the moronic beliefs of QAnon when they are already pickled in the jar of those fantasies and have no skill in critical thinking? 

Are Some People Just Ignorant or Actually Stupid (Combo Anyone)?

What level of a mental black hole in the brain does it take to consciously slather gorilla glue over your hair and plaster it permanently to your scalp? Science has at least one subject to study.

The intrinsic difference between ignorance and stupidity is that ignorance simply implies lack of awareness about something while stupidity denotes the inability of a person to be aware of something. 

The dictionary says “ignorance” is “lack of knowledge or information,” while “stupidity” is “behavior that shows a lack of good sense or judgment” or “the quality of being stupid or unintelligent.” Ignorant means lacking knowledge. Stupid means lacking brainpower.

Strictly speaking, ignorance, or being ignorant, isn’t an insult; it’s simply a lack of understanding. Stupid  means lacking in mental capacity. An ignorant person can usually seek additional knowledge to become less ignorant, but, as the saying goes, you can’t fix stupid.


-Alexa end world crop



Special: The History of the University of Lake Berryessa

The Secret History of a History of Secrets

I’ve been fortunate to have been allowed to document some of the activities of the University of Lake Berryessa (ULB) over the last few years. ULB is a secretive institution of advanced research. Its history mirrors that of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) with which it has been associated since its founding.

The creation of DARPA was authorized by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1958, the same year Monticello Dam was completed and Lake Berryessa began to fill. DARPA's purpose is creating and executing research and development projects to expand the frontiers of technology and science.

The University of Lake Berryessa is an important member of this stealth innovation ecosystem and is often referred to as "Area 52" in classified government documents.

ULB Sticker1

A consortium was formed early on between the Defense Advanced Projects Agency (DARPA) and the Berryessa Underground Research Program in Action (BURPA) to be designated DABURPA (with apologies to Chicago’s DABEARS superfans.)

The ULB campus encompasses several stories of underground classrooms, research laboratories, and engineering development test sites below the surface of Lake Berryessa’s Big Island. The Below the University of Lake Berryessa facilities, often referred to as the BULB by staff, itself has a very secret area, designated the "Light BULB", where the most advanced research is performed.

Clandestine construction of the top secret ULB facilities began at the same time as Monticello Dam - using the dam’s need for building materials to hide the large amount of construction debris produced and delivered to the dam site. The remainder was used to construct Goat Island

Since that time very little information about ULB’s activities have been made public. Previous confidential benefactors have included Albert Einstein, David Blaine, Steve Jobs, and recently Elon Musk, the Technoking of Tesla.

The Lake Berryessa News is grateful to the ULB staff, especially Chancellor I. Kamin Furst, for the access it has provided. Out of a sense of irony or subtle absurdity, most of the information released to the Lake Berryessa News has coincided with the April 1st holiday every year.  

2021 is the 63rd anniversary of the founding of the University of Lake Berryessa. In keeping with the university’s eclectic sense of satirical humor, this year’s anniversary has no particular significance. To honor that signicance, the University is dedicating this year to fantasy artist and engineeronaut M.C. Escher. 

Escher bracket
Escher building


Valley Internet color light logo


Why You Can Trust The Lake Berryessa News, Especially on April 1!

In This Post-Truth World We Stand Firmly Behind our Truthiness 

If you follow  national or local politics, or if you've been involved in our twenty year battle to protect and rebuild the Lake Berryessa community, you know that some people find the truth too confining. Some of these types of folks were instrumental in creating “The Big Lie” about Lake Berryessa which helped bring about the present situation out here.

The Oxford Dictionary announced several years ago that "post-truth" was its 2016 word of the year. The word is "an adjective defined as 'relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.' "

The word has been around for a few decades or so, but there has been a spike in  usage since  the period before the 2016 American presidential election. That sounds about right. 

Feelings, identifications, anxieties and fantasies, that's what actuated the electorate. Not arguments. Not facts.

Post-Truth links nicely as an extension of the word Truthiness. Truthiness is a quality characterizing a "truth" that a person making an argument or assertion claims to know intuitively "from the gut" or because it "feels right" without regard to evidence, logic, intellectual examination, or facts. Truthiness refers to the quality of preferring concepts or facts one wishes to be true, rather than concepts or facts known to be true.

Scoop Nisker was a longtime fixture on San Francisco radio station KFOG during hippie times and after. He became well known for the catchphrase, "If you don't like the news... go out and make some of your own,"

Today his catchphrase would probably have to be "If you don't like the news... go out and  make up some of your own."


-We're closed cartoon


Pridmore Bros


ULB, Elon Musk, Tesla: Future Thinking on Steroids

When the Techno-King of Tesla starts talking, the Quantum-Nerds of Berryessa start listening. Napa County has not yet released the names of the bidders on the Lake Berryessa resorts so it is unknown whether Musk is a financial backer in any of the bids. But now that Musk has become a prime benefactor of ULB, there may be some greater interest from him for the  region. 

ULB has been a partner in the development of some unique projects as listed above, but they have also been involved in some radical technologies such as:

Plant-eating robots: The Energy Autonomous Tactical Robot program creates robots that  feed off plants just as animals do.

Sensor plants: To control the physiology of plants in order to detect chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear threats. 

But that's the past. What's the future?

Solar City is a Tesla company (now part of Tesla Energy) dedicated to lowering the cost of solar energy to the normal consumer. Local solar installations are aleready replacing PG&E power around California. What if a wave of cheap solar farms and solar roofs could sweep across the Lake Berryessa region and all of Napa County? Could Musk, with the support of ULB, make Lake Berryessa a test project to take on the task of eliminating  power-caused fires in our area?

Although the Boring Company may sound like a few parties you've been to, it is very real and a tribute to the  very dry humor of Elon Musk. It constructs safe, fast-to-dig, and low-cost transportation tunnels. 

One of the problems with remote rural recreation areas such as Lake Berryessa is how to get there and back without causing heavy traffic. New roads are prohibitively expensive. But what about a series of Boring Company high speed tunnels below ground and under water to create a network among the new resorts and a regional transportation system with no impact on surface traffic?

OpenAI is an artificial intelligence research laboratory founded by Elon Musk which seeks to build a machine with human intelligence while prioritizing transparency and safety. Tesla also has a division that is developing electric boats using Tesla automotive drive train and batteries. Can you imagine a fleet of Tesla electric boats controlled by OpenAI software with Tesla Energy solar panels providing the power? You would not have to go to pick up your rental boats, they would come to you and go back to the rental agency on their own - with no gas required!

Tesla e-boat


I can explain it for you, but I can't understand it for you!


Gorilla Glue Expands Brain Protection

Gorilla Glue Girl opened a new marketing channel for Gorilla Glue. Not only do you get the smooth shine you wanted, but water rolls off it like “off a duck’s back”. And you never have to worry again about bumping your head if you are distracted and walk into a wall. A special "Brain Dead" option increases overall safety bounciness for the chronically stupid. A single application protects your head like a football linebacker’s helmet!

Helmet in a Bottle


Bureau of Reclamation Promotes New Advertising Opportunity

Due to budget shortfalls and the corporate trend to “advertise everywhere” the BOR will sell advertising space on iconic structures at Lake Berryessa including Monticello Dam, Glory Hole, Jumping Rock and others. To avoid any criticism they will use environmentally-acceptable paints.  Examples below.

Jumping Rock Jeff ad1
-Glory Hole ads
Dam with ads
-Rename the Lake



The definitive book about what happened at Lake Berryessa!

Policy and Politics Betray the People:

The Lake Berryessa Saga, 1958-2020

This KPIX Eye on the Bay interview I did in 2010 is a relevant introduction to the substance of the book. I did it after Pensus had been given the contract for 5 resorts. As we all know Pensus was subsequently kicked out in 2012. 

Peter & Brian Eye



Berryessa Book Cover

The book is available on Amazon as a Kindle version and a paperback version.


Without THE LAKE BERRYESSA NEWS there would be no Lake Berryessa News…and finally there would be no definitive history of what happened at Lake Berryessa. Having participated directly for more than twenty years as an advocate for the lake in the fiasco that was the Bureau of Reclamation’s Visitor Services Plan, its farcical but tragic outcome, and the process of rebuilding, I have very strong views of the causes and results - supported by facts and data.

This book is a historical anthology, a raw, as-it-happened, unfiltered picture of what many of us lived through. The goal is to provide the history and the context within which such an incredibly destructive course of action took place. It is dedicated to documenting this tragedy, this final betrayal of Lake Berryessa by the federal government - and, hopefully, the promised revitalization by Napa County.

Table of Contents 

The Kindle version has color photos and live links to videos and to pdf copies of all the primary documents used as resources for the book.

The paperback version is in black and white. For space rasons the paperback does not include the ection on the Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument. That section is available on the Lake Berryessa News website at:

The History of the Creation of the Berryessa Snow Mountain National MonumentThe Ultimate Political Perversion of the Antiquities Act

The Twisted Ten-Year Political Path From a Modest Nature Area Partnership to a Local Blue Ridge Berryessa National Conservation Area to a Large Disjointed Berryessa Snow Mountain National Conservation Area to an Incoherent Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument.

Is it the “Dumbest National Monument in the United States”? An objective review of the process by which it was created and the final formal designation suggests the answer is YES. I personally support the creation of legitimate national monuments, but this is not that. Being part of the ten year political process that led to its creation convinced me that in many situations the Antiquities Act is being abused. The Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument is a perfect case study of this abuse. 


The Lake Berryessa Fire One Month Later… 

What just happened, WHY, and Where do we go from here?

By Evan Kilkus

Volunteer Project Coordinator, Berryessa Highlands Fire Safe Council (BHFSC)

Read full article here…


LNU Lightning Complex Fire Coverage

News and Video Links


Special Reports



 (Final Lake Berryessa Ragatz Report)


Ragatz Report Summary and Recommendations


Napa County Request for Information & Interest

 for Lake Berryessa Concessions

Managing Partner Agreement (MPA) between Napa County and the Bureau of Reclamation

Lake Berryessa Interview with Peter Kilkus 

on KVON Radio with Larry Kramer


Economics Book on Amazon

-Kindle cover

Amazon Kindle - $2.99

The last few months and years have brought economic issues to the forefront of our lives. They have also shown us how little most Americans understand about basic economics. One of the primary myths that has been debunked by the COVID 19 crisis is that the stock market plays some part in the basic economy. Other simple economic principles that most people don’t understand are explained in my book.

The Stock Market Is Not The Economy, Stupid!

Where Does Money Really Come From?

What is Interest and Why Do We Deserve It?

My previous book on Economics is still available on Kindle. Learn the basic facts for yourself!


Conspiracy Theory or Automatic Pilot: The Economic Roots of Environmental Destruction. Available on Amazon in Kindle (above) or Paperback (below).

Classical economics is a mythology. Predatory capitalism is a fundamentalist religion based on this mythology. Environmental destruction and income inequality are results of the practice of this mythical religion. But is the present economic and environmental situation a conscious conspiracy or an unintended consequence of simplistic beliefs supported by basic human greed?

Serfs Up for book

This book provides the basics of classical economic theory and the description of the intended or unintended consequences of predatory capitalism based on this theory. It contrasts these to sustainability principles underpinning modern environmental economic theory and the various movement towards corporate responsibility.

The book is not meant to be an academic or scientific exercise for economists or policy makers. The concepts discussed are easily accessible to thoughtful readers. My objective was to explain to myself the structure of economic influence that is at the heart of environmental degradation (including the welfare of individual human beings). Understanding is the foundation of action.

Book Cover


Detailed report on how Lake Berryessa and Monticello Dam function at:



Special Release: New combined report for those who want to know almost everything about how Lake Berryessa works!

As Lake Berryessa Flows:

A Combination of Science, Engineering, and Natural Beauty

by Peter Kilkus

The Science and Engineering Elements of a Major Natural Resource

Download Full Report PDF Here...


Lake Berryessa Fills and Glory Hole Spills: The Video History

This amazing series of Lake Berryessa News Drone videos by Evan Kilkus documents the 45 foot rise of Lake Berryessa in 2017.



Full lake level history 2015
Lake Levels 2006 to 031217 edited-1
Lake Levels 1990 2017



Berryessa Valley and the Town of Monticello Historical Photos and Videos from before Lake Berryessa covered it.

Berryessa Valley photo

Thanks to Carol Fitzpatrick for creating the Berryessa Valley Exhibit at the Spanish Flat Village Center described in the first video.




Some Interesting Past Stories

Scuba Diving the Putah Creek Stone Bridge

Lake Berryessa Waterspout 2017

Grass-Fed People to Replace Grass-Fed Beef

Triploid Trout Getting Bigger and Smarter in Lake Berryessa

Becoming REALLY Green to Help Our Planet

University of Lake Berryessa Promotes Global Food Security: 

Meat Grapes &  Steak Potatoes


January 16, 2020 - KVON Radio Interview

Larry Kamer talks w/ author Peter Kilkus, about the many aspects of the Lake Berryessa Saga

Download the interview here...

The Stock Market IS NOT the Economy, Stupid!

Bird Goes Over the Glory Hole Waterfall Without A Barrel

Glory Hole: Awesome, Frightening, But Dangerous?

February 2019: 2nd Anniversary of Glory Hole Spilling

My First Fishing Trip on Lake Berryessa

Berryesa Oil Rush 1900 & 1920

Rattlesnakes: Friend or Enemy – or just a primal fear?


Special Publications (PDF)


As Lake Berryessa Flows:

The Science and Engineering Elements of a Major Natural Resource (Combined Reports)

Combined Report Title Page and Index


As Lake Berryessa Flows: 

A Combination of Science, Engineering, and Natural Beauty 

(Single Report)


As Lake Berryessa Turns!

Temperature and Fishing in a Warm, Monomictic Lake 

(Single Report)  


Seeing Underwater at Lake Berryessa 

(Single Report)


The History of the Creation of the Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument: The Ultimate Political Perversion of the Antiquities Act

By Peter Kilkus

The Twisted Ten-Year Political Path From a Modest Nature Area Partnership to a Local Blue Ridge Berryessa National Conservation Area to a Large Disjointed Berryessa Snow Mountain National Conservation Area to an Incoherent Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument.

Is it the “Dumbest National Monument in the United States”? An objective review of the process by which it was created and the final formal designation suggests the answer is YES. I personally support the creation of legitimate national monuments, but this is not that. Being part of the ten year political process that led to its creation convinced me that in many situations the Antiquities Act is being abused. The Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument is a perfect case study of this abuse. 

Read the full report here.


Chef Neiman Marxist French

The Amazing Foods of Chef Neiman Marxist


Glory Hole Overflows: February, 2017 (ACDC version)

Bird Down Glory Hole (video)

ACDC Intros mix


Hot Tramp 1000 Video of the World’s Largest Rock and Roll Band

Evan fights fire

pKilkus@gmail.com                       © Peter Kilkus 2020