Only two hours southeast of Eureka and three hours northwest of Red Bluff, Ruth Lake is your perfect base for exploring the southern end of Trinity County and the lovely Six Rivers National Forest — nearly one million acres of forest waiting for your enjoyment and relaxation. Here, the Mad and Van Duzen Rivers wind lazily down to the ocean, weaving their way through the forest and providing a luxurious habitat for abundant wildlife — and exceptionally beautiful wilderness hiking and riding trails. Breathtaking views of Ruth Lake blanketed in springtime fog or crowned by the glorious warmth of the summer sun will tempt every amateur and professional photographer — and bird watcher!
Ruth Lake itself is 2,654 feet above sea level at the spillway, while the surrounding South Fork Mountain Range rises to over 6,000 feet. The climate is warm and dry during the summers with daytime temperatures in the 80s and 90s. Spring and fall days tend to be mild and cool with occasional snow and frosty, cold nights. Annual precipitation averages about 60” with the majority falling October thru April. Heavy snowfalls are uncommon below 3000’ but the mountains around Ruth Lake receive substantial snow. The air is crystal clear throughout most of the year.
Over half a dozen campgrounds and day use picnic areas with facilities are conveniently located around the lake, most with beach access. Or you may prefer staying at one of the cabins at Journey’s End, the popular local resort located within walking distance of Ruth Lake Marina. Once you’ve settled in, you’ll find multiple opportunities to fish for bass, crappie and trout. Catch-and-release fly fishing is becoming increasingly popular, especially at the base of the dam. Boating — whether by patio boat, ski boat, dingy or kayak — is an extremely popular pastime for many of our regular summertime visitors as well as local folk.
Campgrounds remain open during the fall for those who enjoy hunting both large and small game, with black tail deer, bear, quail, turkey and several species of duck being among the most popular.
Our calendar lists many of the local events — such as several fishing tournaments, the annual Ruth Lake Summer Festival and the Ruth Rodeo — all of which enrich our local community and provide delightful outdoor recreational opportunities for our visitors.
Two small airports serve the Ruth Lake area: Ruth Airport, located about 5 miles southeast of the town of Ruth, and Dinsmore Airport, located 15 miles west of Ruth Lake in the town of Dinsmore.