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Welcome to Martis Creek Lake

Martis Creek Lake, Nestled in the Sierra Nevada near Lake Tahoe, was created upon the completion of Martis Creek Dam in 1972. The dam, 113 feet high and 2,670 feet long, holds back a lake with a capacity of 20,400 acre feet of water. When full, its surface covers 770 acres.

The lake is normally maintained at minimum pool covering 70 acres. The dam and lake provide flood protection. The lake, operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, also provides a focal point for a host of recreation activities.

The scenic campground has quiet, shaded, well spaced campsites and is close to the large variety of activities offered by the Lake Tahoe-Truckee area during the summer.

2.3 miles southeast of Truckee, California, off State Route 267.

Mailing Address:

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Martis Creek Lake
P.O. Box 2344
11989 Martis Dam Road
Truckee, CA 96160

April - November: 530-587-8113 (FAX 530-587-8623)
December - March: 530-432-6427 (FAX 530-432-6418)


Operating Hours:
The park is open from the last Saturday in April through Nov. 15, and closed during the winter months due to weather conditions. The campground is open from May 15 weekend through October 15 weekend, weather dependent.

There is a ranger station next to the campground that is open seven days a week during the season. The park headquarters at Englebright Lake is open year round, office hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday -Friday.

From Interstate 80 in Truckee, take exit 188B, go south toward Lake Tahoe, 2.3 miles look for the sign for Martis Creek Lake Recreation Area. The campground and a small lake are on the left side of the highway, and a wildlife area with hiking trails is on the right.

Please help us make everyone's visit enjoyable by:

  • Always keep pets leashed while in the campground
  • Cleaning up after your pet is required while visiting Martis Creek Lake.
  • Keeping fires confined to grills and pits and using only dead and down wood.
  • Maintaining quiet between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.
  • Operating vehicles only on designated roads and parking areas provided.
  • Camping only in designated campsites.
  • Helping clean up litter and leaving a clean campsite.
  • Reporting safety hazards to park personnel.
  • Reading the park rules, copies of which are posted throughout the park.

All areas are patrolled by Corps of Engineers rangers and County Sheriff deputies. If you need help, contact a park ranger or deputy sheriff. Dial 9-1-1 for emergencies.


Recreation at Martis Creek Lake

Ranger Programs:

Campfire programs are presented in the amphitheatre from July through Labor Day. The amphitheatre is located in the center of the campground, parking is available just outside of the campground. Handicapped parking is available at the amphitheatre.


Twenty-five campsites are available on a first come, first serve basis at the Alpine Meadow Campground. Campsites have a paved parking space, picnic table, tent pad(s), fire ring and a barbecue grill. Firewood is available for purchase.

Water faucets and vault restrooms with running water are also provided. No electricity is available. A public pay telephone is available. 


Martis Creek Lake is great place to canoe or kayak. No motorized (gas or electric) boats are permitted.


Martis Creek Lake was the first "catch and release trophy trout" lake established in California. Varieties include Rainbow, Brown and Lahonton Cutthroat trout. Anglers must use flies, barbless hooks and artificial lures only. Live bait is not permitted.

Your assistance will help ensure a "lively" experience for all anglers young and old. No fishing is allowed in the streams above the lake.


The Martis Creek Wildlife Area, on the west side of Hwy 267, offers a 4.3 mile hiking and biking trail that loops around the valley.  The trail goes along Martis Creek, through conifer forests and open meadows.  Spring wildflower displays are spectacular from late June to early July.

The trailhead for the 1400 acre Waddle Ranch Conservation Area is at the end of Martis Dam road.  From here you can access miles of forested trails throughout the Conservation area.

Day Use:

Picnicking facilities, fishing access, and portable restrooms are available at the Sierra View Recreation Area. Park facilities are closed during the winter months but cross-country skiing and snowshoeing are permitted. Winter parking space is limited.


The Corps of Engineers is now included in the America the Beautiful interagency pass!  For a one time purchase of $80, you have access to all of your favorite Corps parks in addition to all the other federal public lands and national parks for one year after the date of purchase.

Individuals 62 years or older can buy a $10 lifetime senior pass, which does not expire. All other passes and kids 15 years or younger are free of charge at all federal recreation areas. Senior and access passes holders also receive a 50 percent discount on campsites at Corps-managed campgrounds.

Be sure to pick up your America the Beautiful pass at any of our parks as the money is turned right around and invested in the facilities to improve your recreational experience.

Get details about the America the Beautiful pass series here

  Camping Special Use

May 15 - October 15 (weather permitting)

With the America The Beautiful - Senior or Access Pass




Off-season Closed Closed

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers sells an annual pass for $40. The Corps Annual Pass gives unlimited access to day-use areas at any Corps park for one calendar year, and is sold at all Corps parks.


Martis Creek is listed as Site #37 in the California Wildlife Viewing Guide. The guide identifies habitat areas throughout the state which provide unique opportunities to spot wildlife on a recurring basis.

Resident animals include mule deer, coyote, black bear, bobcat, porcupine, beaver, Mountain bluebirds, bald eagle, osprey, kestrel, red-tailed hawk, blue heron and a wide variety of songbirds and fly-way waterfowl!

Martis Views

Enjoying the beauty of blue water and sky at Martis Creek Lake.
Martis Creek Lake
Enjoying the beauty of blue water and sky at Martis Creek Lake.
Serious fun
Serious fun
A young fisherman tries his luck at beautiful Martis Creek Lake.
Snowy view
Snowy view
Martis Creek Lake is seen with a dusting of snow.
High mountain greenery
High mountain greenery
Native greenery surrounds Martis Creek Lake in the Sierra Mountains of California.
Martis Creek Lake
Martis Creek Lake
An aerial view of Martis Creek Lake on a summer day.
Meandering waters
Meandering waters
Martis Creek Lake is seen in early morning light.




image - one less spark, one less fire