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Solano County Water Agency (SCWA): Where Does The Water Flow?

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Lake Berryessa Statistics: May 27, 2023

The lake level started falling on May 11 and is down now to 430.4' - 9.6' below Glory Hole and holding. A record 2022-2023 rainfall season of 41.86 inches is the second highest since 1998 (46.3"). The dam output has risen from the minimum 45 cfs required by law and contract to an average of 400 cfs driven by Solano County agricultural requirements as the weather warms and the growing season begins.
Evaporation has reached .25 inches per day. The Gamble Gauge is at 88.9% capacity.

On historical average (see chart below) the lake only drops about 10 - 15 feet per summer. We should have plenty of water to enjoy for years - even if another drought begins.

It only took a few days for lake water temperatures to rise noticeably to above 75 degrees at the surface to 10 feet down but has dropped to 70 degrees. The water temperature rose to around 53 degrees from 40 feet to the bottom.

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Reclamation 2023 Summer Hours for Lake Berryessa

The Bureau of Reclamation is changing its hours at Lake Berryessa, May 26, 2023.

Dufer Point Visitor Center
Park Rangers will continue to staff the Dufer Point Visitor Center from noon to 3 p.m. on weekends and holidays.

Oak Shores Day Use
Starting May 26, the north end of Oak Shores will reopen for day use from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays only. South Oak Shore will be open daily from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Smittle Creek and Eticuera Day Use
Smittle Creek and Eticuera are available for wildlife watching, picnicking, and hand launching watercraft throughout the year. The Smittle Creek Trail remains closed due to damage sustained during the LNU Lightning Complex Fire. Park Rangers will close the parking lot gates by 8 p.m. throughout the summer.

Capell Cove Boat Launch
The Capell Cove Boat Launch is open from 4 a.m. to 10 p.m. throughout the year.

Oak Shores, Smittle Creek, Eticuera, and Capell are propane only day use areas. No charcoal barbeques are permitted lake-wide per Napa County ordinances. Annual passes are available at the Dufer Point Visitor Center by appointment during the week or on weekends between 12-3 p.m

Concession Areas
Markley Cove Resort, Pleasure Cove Marina, Steele Canyon Recreation Area, Putah Canyon, and Spanish Flat offer a variety of recreation services, including boat launching, and are alternatives to Oak Shores and Capell Cove. For information regarding services offered at concession-operated facilities, launch fees, or to make reservations, please call the concession operators or visit their websites:

For information on activities, fees, directions, pet restrictions, or other questions, call the visitor center at 707-966-2111, ext. 113, the Lake Berryessa Administration Office at 707-966-2111 or visit the Lake Berryessa website at


This Book Is Fun To Read!

Thanks to all of you who have bought my new book. I hope you like it. If you have a minute could you please go to the Amazon page for my book, scroll down to the Customer Review section and give it some stars and a good review. I would appreciate it since 5 stars and a good review really help sales.

Although it is not a real moneymaker for me, I would like to sell as many copies as I can so that I don't have to keep answering the same questions over and over on my Lake Berryessa News Facebook page (, the Lake Berryessa Facebook group ( and other emails. Thanks.

Lake Berryessa Technical Manual - $20

Lake Berryessa Political History - $15

Get both for $30

For a signed copy of either or both:

Send $20 plus $3.65 shipping for the the Technical Manual, or

$15 plus $3.65 shipping for the Political History, or

$30 plus $4.25 shipping for both

with your name and mailing address to:

Peter Kilkus
1515 Headlands Drive
Napa, CA 94558


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Table of Contents

I. Lake Berryessa
A. The Death of a Valley
B. Why Does Lake Berryessa Exist?
C. The Lake Berryessa Watershed
D. Rainfall and Lake Level History
E. How High Is Lake Berryessa?
F. How Deep is Lake Berryessa?
G. How Much Water Does Lake Berryessa Hold?
H. Mean Sea Level: Is There Such A Thing As Accurate Height?
I. Water In, Water Out, But From Where?
J. Does the WALROS Like Lake Berryessa?
K. Why is Lake Berryessa Not a Part of the Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument?
L. East Side Story
M. Hiking and Wildlife Viewing
N. Are There Quail on Quail Ridge?
O. Why Does A Hiker Cross The Road? To Get To Stebbins Cold Canyon!
P. Private Houseboats - Yes; Private RVs & Trailers - No: Why?
Q. Motorized Boats Banned From Big Island Lagoon! Why!
R. Archeologists Can't Dunk But Can Dig
S. What Can't You Do At Lake Berryessa?
II. Monticello Dam
A. Napa Opposes Building the Monticello Dam
B. Monticello Dam Construction
C. Raise Monticello Dam!
D. Tear It Down and Build It Bigger?
E. Power Generation at Monticello Dam
F. Could Monticello Dam Fail?
G. Monticello Dam Failure Simulation
H. But Can Lake Berryessa Flood Over the Dam?
I. Predicting the Future
J. As Lake Berryessa Turns!
K. The Ins and Outs & Ups and Downs of Lake Berryessa
L. Does Lake Berryessa Sweat in the Summer?
III. Glory Hole
A. How Does Glory Hole Work?
B. Glory Hole: Awesome, Frightening, But Dangerous?
C. Bird Goes Over the Glory Hole Waterfall Without A Barrel
D. Skateboarding the Glory Hole
VI. Odds, Ends, and In-Betweens
A. The Original Putah Creek Stone Bridge
B. The Search for the Drowned Putah Creek Stone Bridge
C. Scuba Diving into Lake Berryessa History
D. The Other Sunken Bridge: Capell Creek Bridge
E. Lake Berryessa 1960: How It Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda Been?
F. Naming the Lake Berryessa Resorts
G. A Trail Around the Lake?
H. Rock & Roll at the Berryessa Bowl
I. Moskowite Corners: A Cultural Time Machine
J. Why Are There No Gas Stations At Lake Berryessa?
K. The Great Berryessa Oil Rush(es): 1900 and 1920
L. Lake Berryessa Seaplane Base
M. Does It Snow at Lake Berryessa? Yes
N. Does Sierra Snowmelt Get To Lake Berryessa? No
V. Special Reports: Speculative Fiction and Fictional Speculation
A. University of Lake Berryessa
B. Is Glory Hole a Black Hole or a Wormhole - Or Both?
C. Profiles in Smartyness: Science Cats at the University of Lake Berryessa
D. Fun on the Pacific flyway - Waterfowl Communication About the Glory Hole Water Slide
E. University of Lake Berryessa Solutions to Climate Change: Meat Grapes & Steak Potatoes
F. Floating Native American Casino Coming to Lake Berryessa

Lake Berryessa Historical Maps
Bonus Section: How to Create a National Monument: History of the Creation of the Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument: the “Dumbest National Monument in the United States”.
The Five Tragedies of the Berryessa Valley: A History of Heartbreak


My other book is listed below.


Policy and Politics Betray the People: The Lake Berryessa Saga: 1958 - 2020

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The KPIX Eye on the Bay interview below is one I did in 2010 and 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.

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Lake Berryessa Data Sources

There are many sources of Lake Berryessa water and weather conditions available. The Solano County Water Agency site is good for real-time graphs of level, capacity, and water temperature. The California Data Exchange Center has data going back decades for level, capacity, capacity change, dam outflow, dam inflow, and rainfall. Anyone can research their own data and create custom charts. This is the source of many of the charts on the Lake Berryessa News website.

 The Weather Underground sells personal weather stations that become part of a public network that shows real-time and historical site data for real-time temperature, daily temperature range, real-time wind speed, wind direction, wind gusts, high and low wind speed limits, rainfall total, rainfall rate, atmospheric pressure, solar radiation, and UV index - a real weather nerd's delight.
 Real-Time Lake Level, Lake Capacity, Water Temperature
Solano County Water Agency
Lake Detailed Historical Data
California Data Exchange Center
Research historical data and create custom plots
Lake Berryessa Code: BER
Local Weather Stations (Weather Underground Network)
Berryessa Highlands (Somewhere in the Berryessa Highlands)
Berryessa Highlands - KCANAPA20
Skiers Cove (Below the Berryessa Highlands)
Skier Cove - KCANAPA228
East Side Road (Across from Big Island)
East Side Road, Lake Berryessa - KCALAKEB2
Spanish Flat (Near the Spanish Flat Recreation Area)


New Fishing Website

WHO WE ARE is here to make fishing more accessible. When you walk into a pro shop and see everyone looking at gear as if they’ve been doing this every day for 20 years, it’s intimidating. It’s hard to go up and ask someone for a recommendation or advice. We want to take away this fear and intimidation and help people get into the sport.