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ATTENTION: Due to low water levels, the only available lake access is a natural surface. Four-wheel drive is recommended.


part ofNew Melones Lake, Bureau of Reclamation
Status: Open through Thu Dec 31 2015   Season Dates


Glory Hole Recreation Area is located at New Melones Lake on the Stanislaus River. The 12,500 surface-acre lake is the fifth largest lake in California and is situated along the edge of the Mother Lode, the rich gold vein that prompted the California Gold Rush of 1849. At an elevation of 1100 feet, the diverse and resource-abundant Foothill Oak Woodlands hug the 100 miles of shoreline.

Popular activities on and around the large, yet uncrowded lake include fishing, boating, water skiing, wake boarding, jet skiing, sailing, swimming, kayaking, canoeing, wildlife viewing, rock climbing, hiking, biking, horseback riding and picknicking. The New Melones Visitor Center offers year-round interpretive events and a museum highlighting natural and cultural resources.

Natural Features:

New Melones Lake is located in Northern California between the historic gold rush towns of Sonora and Angels Camp. The terrain varies from rolling hills to steep marble cliffs, and the vegetation consists of oaks, Ponderosa pines, chamise and buckbrush shrubs.

Visitors can experience the beauty of New Melones by hiking the many trails in the Tuttletown and Glory Hole Recreation Areas.

The climate is Mediterranean with warm, dry summers and cool, wet winters. For those who wish to venture outside the main recreation areas, there are many unique places to visit. Overall, the geography is quite varied and provides many opportunities for all types of recreation.


Hiking, fishing, wakeboarding, waterskiing, boating, sailing and road and mountain biking are just a few of the activities available in Glory Hole Recreation Area.

Equestrian trails are also present in the Peoria Wildlife Mitigation Area and open for the general public. Other interesting sites include Natural Bridges, which can be accessed from Parrott's Ferry Road and has a nice hiking trail and a creek that flows through a marble cave. The Table Mountain Trail provides visitors an opportunity to hike to the top of an extensive lava flow which occurred over nine million years ago.


Visitors will find a full-service marina, amphitheater, playground, horseshoe pits, day-use areas, a multi-lane boat ramp, and a fish cleaning station. The campground provides modern amenities like flush toilets, showers and drinking water. Picnic tables and fire rings are provided at each campsite.

Nearby Attractions:

Glory Hole Recreation Area is surrounded by many places of natural beauty including Natural Bridges, Camp Nine, Yosemite National Park, Stanislaus National Forest, Moaning Caverns, Big Trees State Park and Columbia State Park.

Angels Camp Museum, Calaveras County Museum and Sonora Military Museum also provide great opportunities for learning interesting information about the area.

Surrounding communities are popular vacation and retirement destinations and provide necessary services and shopping opportunities. Golfing, snow skiing, river rafting, commercial caves, historical railroad and Native American museums are close by as well.

Activities and Amenities

Within Facility
  • Accessible Flush Toilets
  • Accessible Sites
  • Amphitheater
  • Biking
  • Birding
  • Boat Ramp
  • Boat Rentals
  • Boating
  • Campfire Programs
  • Campfire Rings
  • Comfort Station
  • Drinking Water
  • Dump Station
  • Educational Programs
  • Evening Programs
  • Fish Cleaning Stations
  • Fishing
  • Fuel Available
  • Geological Attractions
  • Grills
  • Hiking
  • Horseshoe Pit
  • Marina
  • Mountain Biking
  • Parking Area
  • Self Pay Station
  • Showers
  • Wildlife Viewing
Within 10 Miles
  • Bait Shop
  • General Store
Know Before You Go
  • Recreation area entrance gates are closed at night during the posted hours.
  • Vehicle entry after the gates are closed is prohibited. Exit at any time.
  • Campfires are only allowed in fire rings or grills in designated areas.
  • For additional information see 43 CFR Parts 423 and 429. They are available at the New Melones Administrative Office or online at: http://www.usbr.gov/cio/im/rules/Rules.htm
  • For your safety and security, recreation gates are closed at night; gate closure times vary by season; vehicle entry after the gates are closed is prohibited; exit at any time.
  • Click here for more information
  • Getting There:

    GPS Info. (Latitude, Longitude):
    38.0075, -120.54028
    38°0'27"N, 120°32'25"W

    From Sacramento, take Highway 99 south to Highway 12 east. At San Andreas, take Highway 49 south for approximately 15.2 miles. Turn right onto Glory Hole Road and follow the road 3 miles to the recreation area.

    From Central California and the Bay Area, take Highway 108 east from Modesto to Sonora, then take Highway 49 north approximately 17 miles. Turn left onto Glory Hole Road and follow the road 3 miles to the recreation area.

    Contact Information:

    Mailing Address:

    ANGELS CAMP  CA  95222

    Phone Number:

    Information:  (209)536-9094
    Weekends: (209) 536-9543

    Discover and reserve camping, lodging, permits, tours and more at America's parks, forests, monuments and other public lands with Recreation.gov. Learn more about us, or about any of our agency partners below:
    Bureau of Land Management Federal Highway Administration National Oceanic Atmosphere Administration Smithsonian Institution USDA Forest Service US Army Corps of Engineers US Fish and Wildlife Service National Park Service Bureau of Engraving and Printing Tennessee Valley Authority Bureau of Reclamation National Archives Records Administration