The Ultimate Guide to Shaver Lake
Shaver Lake is one of Central California’s top vacation destinations (located in Fresno County). I’ve been going on annual trips since I was three months old! Since I’ve been going here for a very long time, I’ve been blessed enough to experience everything this dream location has to offer. I’m going to try and keep this blog post sweet and to the point. I have a lot of recommendations and tips to share, so let’s get right into the information.
Where to Stay
Having a good, trustworthy place to stay is essential for any trip. Luckily, Shaver Lake is home to the best. Here’s the rundown:
- This camp facility (which also doubles as a Day Pass area for the lake) is located on Shaver Lake… well as close as you can get without being in the middle of the lake. Built in 1963, Camp Edison is home to a wide variety of camping areas that are suitable for all camping situations, big RVs included.
Tips for Camp Edison:
- Get your spots in advance. Camping spots go quickly for this area, so make sure you get your sites ASAP.
- You are not allowed to bring your own firewood to Camp Edison, you must purchase some there. A truck with wood drives around daily, typically in the evening. There is a fire pit at every campsite.
- You do not need quarters to use the shower facilities. The showers have a card system. You can purchase a shower card at the front entrance and reload it as needed. It is 25 cents for 2 minutes. The showers at Camp Edison are extremely nice and well worth it.
- During the summer, head to the volleyball court by Yellow Pine Loop. I’ve met so many new families and friends at this place. There’s nothing quite like teaming up and playing a good game.
- The “Happy Camper” has a lot of great souvenirs. Make sure to stop by a stock up on gear.
- The Shaver Lake Museum (located on the right when entering camp) is open daily till 3 pm. Stop by and have a look around.
This is one of the best lodging places in Shaver Lake. It is located right in the heart of town. Rooms start at $110 a night! Cabins and Suites start at $160. You can even stay in a Tee Pee, which includes cots and a private fire pit.
If you are looking for a place with a ton of amenities, this is your location. Guest suites (2 people) start at $199. The suites come with a fireplace, WiFi, flat-screen TV, and access to honor bars. A few of the rooms come with jetted tubs. Elliot also offers cabins starting at around $299. I would highly recommend their suite selections if you are looking for a romantic getaway (they offer champagne breakfast and chocolates/desserts on arrival).
This place is perfect if you are looking for a cabin rental. Cabins start around $125 a night! All cabins come with a fully stocked kitchen and an outdoor deck area. Tip: If you are looking to bring your furry friend with you on this trip, Knotty Pine Cabins requires a $50 non-refundable fee for pet allowance.
Things to Do
There are a ton of amazing places in Shaver to grab souvenirs and gifts. Here are a few of my favorites:
Shaver Lake Sports – This store sells a wide variety of souvenir options, from t-shirts to sweatshirts to awesome wooden stickers. Head here to see all the options Shaver offers.
Ken’s Market – Come here for all of your food and necessities. They offer the best prices in town.
Mama Bear’s Gifts – This store is full of adorable knickknacks and wooden statues. You need to stop by here, even to just walk around.
Shaver Lake Art Gallery – For all my photography lovers, this is a must-stop location. There are a lot of great shots currently for sale!
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Easy: Rancheria Falls – 2-mile round-trip hike; trail ends at the base of the falls
Easy: Dinkey Creek – This campground area does day-time visits for a super cheap price. There are fun, short trails that lead down right to the water. When the water is high, there are rock slides to float down. Also, make sure to stop by the jumping rock area!
Medium: Mushroom Rock – 2-miles from the Huntington Lake Dam; great spot for pictures
Advanced: Dinkey Lakes Trail – 11.8-mile loop; starts at the Dinkey Lakes Trail Head in Willow Meadow
Water Activities and Rentals
Shaver Lake Marina (ALL DAY PRICING LISTED) – rentals for pontoon boats ($295 for the largest size), waverunners ($300), paddle boards, kayaks ($50-70), canoes ($70), paddle boats ($70), inner tubes/towing tubes ($45-$60), and fishing boats ($100). They also do rentals for hourly and 1/2 day use.
Shaver Watersports (ALL DAY PRICING LISTED) – similar pricing to the marina; ski boats ($500), waverunners ($250), sailboat ($70)
Off-roading is a popular activity in this area. These are my trail recommendations, ranked from easy to “breaking an axle” difficult (we actually broke an axle on this trail):
Easier: Bald Mountain – This is a 5.4-mile trail to the best view you’ve ever seen in your life. There is a tower at the top of the trail. Recently, someone attached a swing to it. I highly recommend this trail if you decide to go on any of them.
Moderate: Mirror Lake – Mirror is a 6.8-mile trail that features a “stone stair” obstacle. The view of the lake is stunning.
Difficult: Strawberry Lake – Strawberry is a 3.4-mile trail that truly takes you down the back roads. There are a ton of boulders to mess-around with (for all my off-road lovers)
Difficult: Red Lake – Red is a 7.2-mile trail. Definitely plan for an all-day trip on this trail.
Where to Eat
You’d be surprised how many restaurants are in Shaver Lake. With so many places, it’s hard to choose the best ones. These are my recommendations:
Shaved Ice @ Shaver Lake Gas – This is my “must-stop” location every time I go up there. It is the best shaved ice I’ve had in my life!
Shaver Lake Pizza – The pizzas here are really good. They do sandwiches and wings as well.
Shaver Lake Pub & Grill – Great pub-style food and full-bar services; I’ve heard a lot of good things about their tacos and steak bites.
The Hungry Hut – This fast-food style got a makeover a couple of years ago by new owners. It’s been booming ever since! Their milkshakes are to die for.
Trading Post – This place serves a great dinner; they are known for their fish and steak plates. Trading Post is on the pricier side.
Shaver Coffee and Deli – They are famous for their “Chunky Bread” (monkey bread, cinnamon sugar bread). You MUST try it out!
Bob’s Blue Sky Cafe – This place has really good sandwiches, salads, and wraps. They also serve crepes!
ShortHorn Bar and Grill – It’s a local favorite for a reason; their prices are the best in the area.
Shaver Lake Restaurant and Bar – This place does a variety of good meals. Recently, they hired a personal chef to serve Chinese food. Make sure to check out the dates this is going on.
I hope you enjoyed the Ultimate Guide for Shaver Lake. If you know any more awesome tips or recommendations for Shaver, let me know in the comments.
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