What Can I See and Do on My Way to Clear Lake Campground?
Whether you want to hike, visit a winery, shop, or just enjoy a scenic drive, routes to or from Lake County offer several options. Most wineries are currently open by reservation only so be sure to call ahead. Other places suggested may also be closed or have limited hours so we advise you to check in advance.
These are our suggestions for your drive to Clear Lake Campground, depending on which direction you'll be coming from - or on your drive home (just reverse the directions).
From Sacramento area:
Instead of taking I5 to Hwy 20, take the Hwy 16 exit near Woodland and follow the slightly longer but more scenic route through the Capay Valley. Along Hwy 16 you'll pass small farms, olive groves, and almond and fruit orchards as you drive through the tiny towns of Esparto, Capay, Brooks, and Guinda. Just before Brooks is the huge Cache Creek Casino Resort, the only big development in this rural area. In Brooks, stop at Seka Hills Olive Mill for olive oil and other local products. Capay Valley Vineyards, also in Brooks offers visits by appointment (530- 796-4110). The historic Commons Farm Kitchen in Guinda is a roadside eatery dating from 1926 with outdoor dining or food to go. Cache Creek runs through the valley along Hwy 16 to Cache Creek Regional Park, a good spot for a picnic. It's also a popular place for inner tubing on the creek. When you get to Hwy 20, turn left.
Along Hwy 20 from I5:
Coming from either south or north, take Hwy 20 west. The exit is near the town of Williams where you can stop at the historic Granzella's Restaurant for take-out or food shopping in their store. Continuing on Hwy 20, or if you're joining Hwy 20 from the scenic Hwy 16 route, hikers can stop at the Redbud Trail hiking area in the Cache Creek Management Area on the left side of the highway as you're heading toward Lake County. You'll get great views and may even see Tule Elk. Two wineries are along this route (call ahead for reservations to visit): Cache Creek Vineyards and Brassfield.
* Note: If you like these options, you can also take this route to/from Fairfield, Concord, or Oakland although it's longer.
From San Francisco and the South Bay on the 101 Freeway:
From 101, you have several options depending on how much extra time you have. But if you want to spend the day on your road trip, you could visit some places along the coast on your way (note that traffic may be bad along the coast on weekends though). Popular coast destinations include Point Reyes National Seashore, Bodega Bay, or Jenner. But here are more convenient options, depending on how long you want to spend on the road:
From the East Bay and San Francisco through the Napa Valley:
From Highway 80, exit at Highway 37 in Vallejo. You'll pass Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, a place the kids might enjoy. Turn right onto Highway 29 toward Napa, then you have 2 options:
Whichever way you decide to drive, we look forward to welcoming you at Clear Lake Campground:
Martha Bakerjian is a part-time employee at Clear Lake Campground and writes a web site about Italy: