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Warmest beach/lake

London
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Warmest beach/lake

How far do you have to drive from San Francisco to find a beach with warm water you can actually swim in?

Is there any good lakes that is good to swim in?

If so, how many months of the year is that possible?

All help is greatly appreciated.

San Francisco...
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for San Francisco
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1. Re: Warmest beach/lake

This is Northern California, there is virtually no "warm" water close by (unless you count hot tubs).

There is, alternatively, warm weather.

Santa Cruz is the closest beachy, lie-in-the-sun destination, but the water isn't warm. It's about two hours south.

Lake Tahoe, or Donner (famous for the pioneers who cannibalized themselves to survive the winter) can also be quite spectacular, but that's not warm either.

California
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2. Re: Warmest beach/lake

I thought that cannibal thing had been largely debunked or at least minimized. Donner is the place where a large number of the pioneer Donner/Reed party lost their lives when they were snowbound over a long winter.

I don't think of the ocean being that warm in norhtern CA. I think there are some warm reseviors.

Folsom Lake just east of Sacramento is warm, they have sandy beaches at Beales Point or out of Granite BAy. Shasta, north of Redding, has water that doens't cause pain to enter like Tahoe and Donner do. Don Pedro in the foothills can be warm in the summer and Oroville is really warm. Though the town of Oroville gets no respect the lake is very pretty and great for houseboating/boating.

I would visit any of these lakes mid June through early Sept.

Shell Beach...
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for Big Sur
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3. Re: Warmest beach/lake

Agreed. Northern California beaches are not generally for swimming; the Pacific there is often bitterly cold because of ocean currents, all the way down to Point Conception, just west of Santa Barbara. I really wouldn't think about getting in the water until Santa Barbara, but admittedly I'm kind of a wuss.

Grover Beach...
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for Pismo Beach, Cambria, Big Sur
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4. Re: Warmest beach/lake

Northern California beaches are cold. Southern California beaches are often closed due to high bacteria levels.

Our local Pismo Beach surfers complain of flu like symptoms year round.

If you must swim in the ocean, you do so at your own risk.

Want warm water? Hawaii is where you want to be.

San Jose, California
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5. Re: Warmest beach/lake

I think you got your answer on the beach question, 400+ miles to get to warmer waters.

There are plenty of lakes that are swimmable. Clear Lake and Berryessa are the closest big lakes, 1-2 hours from SF. There are many small lakes closer. I'd say from about May - Sept it's warm in enough for swimming.

I like the lakes in the Sierra Mts for swimming, granite rocks and cliffs to jump off of. The water in those lakes tend to be cold most of the year though.

My favorite spot is Sand Harbor at Lake Tahoe, it's on the Nevada side just south of the town of Incline Village. Its about a 5 hr drive from SF. The water in Lake Tahoe is very cold year round because it is such a deep lake, but it is incredibly beautiful.

take a look at these pictures

aboutlaketahoe.com/beaches/sand-harbor.htm

San Jose, California
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6. Re: Warmest beach/lake

I think you got your answer on the beach question, 400+ miles to get to warmer waters.

There are plenty of lakes that are swimmable. Clear Lake and Berryessa are the closest big lakes, 1-2 hours from SF. There are many small lakes closer. I'd say from about May - Sept it's warm in enough for swimming.

I like the lakes in the Sierra Mts for swimming, granite rocks and cliffs to jump off of. The water in those lakes tend to be cold most of the year though.

My favorite spot is Sand Harbor at Lake Tahoe, it's on the Nevada side just south of the town of Incline Village. Its about a 5 hr drive from SF. The water in Lake Tahoe is very cold year round because it is such a deep lake, but it is incredibly beautiful.

take a look at these pictures

aboutlaketahoe.com/beaches/sand-harbor.htm

San Francisco...
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7. Re: Warmest beach/lake

You can find warm water for swimming in Russian River in summer months. Just go to a town like Guerneville or Healdsburg, about 2 hours from San Francisco.

London
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8. Re: Warmest beach/lake

Ok, so I guess it¨s the lakes for swimming then.

But I would like to go surfing in the ocean so im gonna have to buy a wet suit then.

Is there any good beginners surf near SF?

Can you surf all year?

Thanks for all the help!

Santa Cruz...
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9. Re: Warmest beach/lake

I think you have your answer. Do not come to San Francisco for beach or lake swimming.

Go to Hawaii for beach swimming. Enjoy San Francisco for what it is.

Maybe San Diego?

Grover Beach...
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for Pismo Beach, Cambria, Big Sur
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10. Re: Warmest beach/lake

Surfing is a year round thing in California up and down the coast. Winter months hold the promise of better waves because of storms or fronts moving through.

But you will definitely need your wet suit.