Improvements along the north shore of Clear Lake and the monumental opening in 2011 of Mount Konocti County Park put much of Lake County's iconic mountain into public hands for perpetuity. Geologists believe that Clear Lake may be the oldest lake in North America, with its modern shape born 2.5 million years ago when a huge landslide dammed the headwaters of Cold Creek, blocking westward water flow into the Russian River. Water filled the level valley. The rising waters eventually found an outlet in Cache Creek, which drained eastward into the Sacramento River. Mount Konocti, the largest volcano of the Clear Lake Volcanic Field at 4,299 feet, rises above Clear Lake. The volcanic field, part of the Pacific Ocean's Ring of Fire, contains seven volcanic vents from 10,000 to 2.5 million years old Western States Seaplane Festival and Clear Lake Splash-In, Sep 27–29 Seaplane spot landing and water bombing contests, exhibits, film presentations. Lakeport .................................. 263-8843 www.clearlakesplashin.comMount Konocti…Lake County's ancient towering volcano provides a backdrop to California's Clear Lake. Home to falcons and other raptors, sacred to Native Americans, and the subject of legends, the mountain is one of the few landmarks ever-visible from most locations throughout the county. In private hands since the mid- 1800s, few have enjoyed the breathtaking beauty seen from the top. With Lake County's recent acquisition of 1,520 acres on Mount Konocti there are now over 2,300 acres of public land on the mountain, including all five of the main peaks.Clear Lake lies in a broad basin in the Coast Ranges of Northern California. A vast watershed, relatively shallow depth, and temperate climate keep Clear Lake's water warm and rich in nutrients, making it highly productive, or eutrophic. Studies indicate that Clear Lake has been eutrophic— providing abundant food for fish and wildlife—since the last Ice Age, more than 10,000 years ago. The Clear Lake Basin is home to year-round populations of ducks, pelicans, grebes, herons, egrets, osprey, and winter populations of bald eagles. The Basin also supports abundant populations of deer, bears, mountain lions, raccoons, and other animals. Within Lake County, five other distinct AVAs exist—Clear Lake AVA, Benmore Valley AVA, Guenoc AVA, Red Hills AVA, and High Valley AVA.
California's largest natural freshwater lake, and boasts the cleanest air in the entire state . In fact, Lake County rarely experiences coastal or valley fog, which translates into lots of sunshine —approximately 265 days of clear or partly clear skies on average. Lake County is a destination for the outdoor enthusiast with a wide range of trails for hiking, biking, and off-road adventures and many lakes for fishing, kayaking, and wakeboarding; for the nature lover with parks, preserves, and open spaces for viewing many types of birds, animals, and native plants; for the history buff with num erous museums, landmarks, pioneer towns, and Pomo culture; and it is a destination for the wine lover with some of California's newest appellations, award-winning wines, and friendly wineries. Visitors can take a springtime mule-drawn wagon tour of a historic ranch complete with authentic chuckwagon barbecue and local wine, go soaring in a glider high above hills and valleys covered in vineyards, majestic oaks, and whispering pines, or paddle a kayak for an up-close view of nesting herons, soaring eagles, or dancing grebes. Any time of year is right for discovering Lake County. In spring, vibrant redbud blossoms and wildflowers blanket valleys and meadows, making the area's already-stunning landscape even more picturesque. During summer, warm weather and the lure of the lake beckon, enticing visitors to a myriad of activities at the water's edge. Independence Day celebrations include parades and colorful fireworks displays over the lake. With autumn comes the joy of exploring road side farm stands, harvest festivals, and tasting rooms to savor the flavors of the area's premium pears, crunchy walnuts, and awardwinning wines. Late fall and winter activities include holiday fairs and festivals, lighted parades, and even an annual teddy bear reunion. Lake County nights are spectacular, whether gazing in awe at the star-filled night sky, telling ghost stories around the campfire, sitting on a deck overlooking one of many beautiful lakes or even trying your luck at any of the area's casinos. Lodging options include historic and modern hotels, a hot springs resort, lakefront resorts, vacation rental homes, family-friendly campgrounds, affordable motels, and romantic bed-and-breakfast inns