Millerton Lake South Shore Via Blue Oak Trail is a 6.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Friant, California that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible from February until December.
The easy South Shore trail is the best hike. The scenic portion starts at South Bay Picnic Area and is 2 mile 1-way. Almost at the exact geographic middle of California, Millerton Lake State Recreational Area is 20 miles northeast of Fresno. Many people stop by the park on their way to the famous Yosemite National Park. The lake's cool blue water offers a pleasant escape from the summer heat of the central valley. The park is dominated by the massive lake and popular among water sport enthusiasts and boaters. There are some hiking opportunities and the best hike is the flat and accessible South Shore trail. Also called Winchell Ridge Trail,the easy and smooth hike offers unobstructed, spectacular view of the lake. The multi-use trail is very family friendly for both hiking & biking. It starts at the Blue Oak Picnic Area, follows the contours of Winchell Bay and ends at the Marina at Winchell Bay. The first two miles run parallel to the road and therefore not very interesting, hence most people start at the South Bay Picnic Area. From South Bay Picnic Area to the Marina is about 2 mile one way and 4 mile round trip. Almost the entire trail hugs the shoreline, visitors have good opportunities catching a glimpse of the bald eagle soaring over the blue lake as well as other water fowls. The trail is constructed on rolling hill with grassland, chaparral and oak woodland environments. The hills are green in the spring and fall from rain and brown in the dry hot summer.
Good trail and I did not hear a single rattlesnake. FYI. The map lead me to outside a fenced in area. This requires a $12 entry fee to millerton lake.
Took the hike this morning it was beautiful, very quiet early in the morning. Weather was perfect this was my first hike and I have to admit I loved it!