The Upper and Lower Billy Creek Campgrounds are located at beautiful Huntington Lake on the western end of the lake at 7,000 ft elevation near Kaiser Wilderness. It is approximately 80 miles north of Fresno, California.
These campgrounds have rustic charm. Lower Billy is right on the lake, where Upper Billy is just above Lower Billy, but located on the adjacent slopes of a mountain. Upper Billy Creek has a view of the lakes and dams of Huntington Lake. Each campsite has a picnic table, fire ring and a bear box. There is no electrical hook ups.
Huntington Lake was constructed in 1912. This was part of the Big Creek Hydroelectric Project. The lake was named after Henry E. Huntington, who financed the work of the Big Creek Project. This project was envisioned by John S. Eastwood to provide power for California.
Huntington Lake is ranked one of the top sailing lakes in the world. Almost every weekend in the summer we have Regatta’s that attract racers from the western states. The Fresno Yacht club handles the events. From many of our campgrounds you can watch the sailboats racing.
Huntington Lake is also famous for a B-24 that crashed into the lake in December 1943 that had been on a World War II training mission that killed 6 crew members. The plane was found in 1955 and some of the wreckage still remains.
Billy Creek Museum is within walking distance from the campground. It is open approximately from July 4th to Labor Day weekend. Learn the history of Huntington Lake, the B-24 Bomber, and the history of the building of the lakes and dams for the hydroelectric project.
We also have a free interpretive program. Every Saturday night we have a guest speaker. Learn about birds of prey, animals of the forest, star gazing, and bats, just to name a few. Fishing, swimming and boating, plus viewing of wildlife, bird watching and leisurely hikes along the lake are popular activities.
Here is a list of some of our hiking trails:
Nellie Lake - 10 miles round trip. This trail starts at the Upper Billy Creek Campground. (The trail marker is across from the camp host site). This trail is a three hour up at an enjoyable pace with numerous stops due to it being a steep hike with approximately a 2,300’ elevation climb. It takes about two hours to return at a moderate to brisk pace. This is an excellent day hike, as well as a beautiful lake to spend a few nights.
College Rock - 5 miles round trip. The trail starts behind the D&F Pack Station off the Huntington Lake Road. It is a steep and strenuous hike, and the half-way point to Kaiser Peak. The view is the entire Huntington Lake Basin.
Kaiser Peak - 10 miles round trip. The trail starts behind the D&F Pack Station off the Huntington Lake Road. It is a steep and strenuous 3,000 foot climb with many switchbacks. At the top there is a spectacular view from the Minarets to Kings Canyon National Park.
Coarsegrass Meadow - 5 miles round trip. Starting from Home Creek, off the Huntington Lake Road, there is a well-marked and not difficult trail to the flowery meadow. Hiking two miles past Coarsegrass Meadow, with a steep drop, you will find another meadow of quaking aspen called Aspen Meadow.
Mushroom Rock - 300 yards. Approximately 2 miles from the Huntington Lake Dam (west end of lake) on the Huntington Lake Road (going towards Big Creek) turn on 8S32. Stay on main dirt road for approximately 4.5 miles. The Mushroom sign turn-off is 3/10 of a mile to the parking area. Just follow the sign 300 yards to the vista. This is an excellent view of Shaver Lake, Balsam Forebay, and the San Joaquin drainage.
From Lower Billy Creek there is a trail that goes along the lake that ends up at Huntington Lake Resort. They have a restaurant that has great pancakes for breakfast and mouth watering burgers and fries for lunch. At dinner they have a steak house that is truly enjoyable. They offer entertainment from live music to chocolate in the moonlight.