Portal Forebay is a small 20 acre lake that was completed in 1956 as a part of the Big Creek Hydroelectric Project which produces electricity for Southern California. The lake is located midway between Florence and Huntington Lakes at an elevation of 7,180 feet. The lake serves as a holding forebay for the Portal Power House which is located at Huntington Lake.
To get to Portal Forebay take Hwy 168 east from Clovis to Shaver Lake. Continue thru Shaver Lake to Huntington Lake. At east end of the Huntington Lake turn right on the Kaiser Pass Road (at Eastwood Visitor Center). Travel 13.6 miles to Portal Forebay
The Kaiser Pass Road is a narrow one-lane road that is not recommended for large RV's or trailers. Travel time from Clovis is about 2.5 hours. The road is open to Portal Forebay late May through November.
Kayaks, canoes, float tubes or small boats are best suited for this lake. There is no fee to use watercraft on Portal Forebay.
Portal Forebay has a small campground adjacent to its shore with 11 campsites that are available first come-first served. No drinking water is available at the campground. Water is available at the High Sierra Visitor Information Center located a short drive from the campground. A fee is charged for overnight camping. This is Bear Country. Please store food properly and use the food storage lockers provided in the campground. Never feed the bears.
Since the lake is small in size, anglers will find this the perfect lake for fishing from a canoe or float tube. Eastern Brook and Rainbow Trout are stocked in the lake. The limit is five per day, 10 in possession. A trail around the lake provides access for anglers who want to fish from shore. State fishing regulations apply.
History of Portal Forebay
The reservoir was constructed in 1958 by Southern California Edison Company for the purpose of generating hydroelectric power. Located at 3,330 feet in elevation, it was named after a large, natural pool in the river just above the location of the dam.
For more information contact the High Sierra Ranger Station at 559-855-5360, or during the summer you can contact the High Sierra Visitor Information Station at 559-877-7173.