Lake Oroville, Lime Saddle: Aug. 21, 2021 (Image: Kathryn Reed)

It has been dramatic watching Lake Oroville rise since the beginning of the year. Even more astonishing is how far it has come since I moved to Butte County in 2021.

Lake Oroville, Lime Saddle: Jan. 27, 2023                                                                                                                         (Image: Kathryn Reed)

In 2021, Lake Oroville hit a record low 628 feet. The previous record of 645 feet was set in 1974.

Capacity is 900 feet, what’s called a full pool. On May 23,  it was at 891 feet, with water being released into the Feather River in anticipation of more snow melt.

Lake Oroville, Lime Saddle: Feb. 18, 2023 (Image: Kathryn Reed)

That record amount of snow in the Sierra, well, it’s filling reservoirs throughout California.

The parking lot at Lime Saddle, one of the boat launches for Oroville, only a few months ago was full of houseboats. There wasn’t enough water for them to float in.

Lake Oroville, Lime Saddle: March 18, 2023                                                                                                                      (Image: Kathryn Reed)

Last weekend the parking lot was full of boat trailers with people out on the water for the day.

Lake Oroville, Lime Saddle: May 23, 2023                                                                                                                         (Image: Kathryn Reed)

Instead of looking like something out of an apocalypse, this reservoir is inviting, with people swimming, water skiing, fishing and enjoying their houseboats.

Now if only we could wave a magic wand to have more predictable rain/snow as well as summer heat.

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