Lake Alpine is a small, scenic reservoir located in a timbered setting at an elevation of 7,350 feet and covers 180 acres. It is the central attraction of the "Lake Alpine Recreation Complex" on the Calaveras Ranger District, Stanislaus National Forest. Lake Alpine provides a wide variety of recreation opportunities, including low-speed boating (boat launch available), fishing, hiking, and biking. Multiple interpretive programs and guided hikes are offered by the Forest Service throughout the summer months.
The boat ramp is located at the Lake Alpine Picnic Area. There is no overnight mooring to the dock or shoreline vegetation. There is a 10 mph speed limit, and no motorized boats are allowed on the lake at night.
There are six developed campgrounds surrounding Lake Alpine. All sites are on a first come, first served basis. The camping and picnicking facilities around Lake Alpine are usually open from June through October of each year, depending upon snow conditions. Camping is permitted only in signed campgrounds.
Picnic areas are for day use only, no fee is charged. The two main picnic areas are Lake Alpine Day Use area, located by the boat ramp, and Chickaree Day Use, located on the east shore of the lake.
The Lakeshore Trail follows the south shore of Lake Alpine and totals 1.6 miles. It begins at Pine Marten Campground and ends at Forest Road 7N17. Hikers can continue walking along this road; however, it is a popular 4WD route, and there may be vehicles. The 1.4 mile trail to Inspiration Point is accessed from the Lakeshore Trail. This is an uphill climb of moderate difficulty with rewarding views of Spicer Reservoir and Dardanelles.
There are dozens of programs presented by the Calaveras District Interpretive staff throughout the summer including some of these listed below. All Saturday evening programs run from 7 to 8 p.m. and are co-sponsored by the non-profit Three Forests Interpretive Association.