Folsom Lake: Beeks Bight to Doton’s Point, April 2022

These shots are from week before last but I suspect lake level to be still lowering. It looks more like August’s lake levels in ‘normal’ times of non drought, which are rare these days.

Although the weather has been seasonable a big hat is always recommended to fight the fierce glare off the water, the granite and its white sand.

I turned left, or north at the park entrance, driving about as far as the pavement runs, past Granite Beach, Oak Point and Doton’s Point all the way to Beek’s Bight parking lot, about filled with trucks and cars that day.

Here’s the start of the trail following Beek’s pretty much dry Bight, curving back south toward those points I just mentioned. Good open hiking, not crowded and now desert like, glaring and expansive because the lake is smaller.

But halfway down the Bight is the lake, pretty as ever and quiet too, this chilly water time being fisherman’s and not yet jet-skiers.

Hardy skier

One fisherman told me he only had caught one bass and was going out to try deeper water, the aggressively spawning thrash of schools of carp chasing even other making a ruckus. A thing I’d never seen before, though carp rule my nearby Dry Creek most times.

You expect granite and you get it here but half the time it is granodiorite with extra mafic goodies sprinkling it, biotite mica and such.

Then, you see lots of tortured, schisty looking foliated metamorphic rocks too.

Lots of aplite quartz veins but no pegmatite evident.

And light white sandy beaches everywhere consisting of all that easily leached feldspars components of granodiorite. And most other rocks.

And watch out for bogs of clay and silt, mess up your shoes after rains.

Another end product of these uplifted and exfoliating intrusive igneous ‘granite’ plutons, floating balloons of molten rock that froze deep underground here long ago.

So long buried but now these rock balloons are being uplifted by tectonic forces and are exposed and degrading.

A hard as stone rock is brought down by running and freezing water and a weak constitution.

Lots of Canada geese but not yet the huge flocks you sometimes see out here. Not many insects yet either, though some.

I hugged the water on the hike south, then tried to to take the high road back to the dry Bight, where possible.

Foilated, schisty, layered by platy micas. Metamorphic.

Not much rain since December but some good lupin flowers and others blooming.

Basaltic country rock stuck in granite pluton.

You can see how much longer I needed to walk, skirting each tiny bay. Often I climbed up the high points to see the sights and check the outcrops.

I kept hiking south, thinking I’d spot the faraway dam, my goal, around each miniature cape I’d traversed.

But you can see from the map how far I needed to go before finally seeing it and turning around north again after a rest and snack. Made it almost back to within sight of Granite Beach before the dam could be seen.

Heres where the bight turns dry, another quarter mile to the parking lot on the left.

My old hip was sore and my new hip as well when I had hiked it back up the Bight to my car. I was glad I’d paid the $12 parking and use fee rather than walking in for free.

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