Carl Wilson Lake – Site 2

Carl Wilson Lake
Map Courtesy of Jeff’s Maps

I visited this site in August, 2017. The site is located on the eastern shore of Carl Wilson, at about the halfway point, and is well worth checking out if you’re staying on Carl Wilson (and you should stay on Carl Wilson).  The site offers great views, decent tent spots and some of the sneaky best swimming I found all summer.

Canoe Landing/Terrain: The shoreline along the site is rocky. There’s a narrow slip in the rocks that’s good for one canoe, but loading/unloading can still be a bit of a balancing act (or unbalancing act as my buddy found out during a slow motion dumping while trying to get in the canoe later on). The site rises away from the water, with a number of different level spots. Despite the slight change in elevation, it’s not a difficult site to get around.

Fire pit in the foreground, tents in the background. Also, wet, stinky trip clothes hanging on a line.

Tent Sites: Probably the only mild negative about this site is the fact that there are only two decent tent spots. The good news is that both spots are quite good; broad, flat surfaces with good views of the water and decent trees nearby if you want to build a tarp structure. The sites also quite close together, so get ready to listen to some snoring if your trip patterns forgot to bring their Zyppahs.

Fire Pit & Accessories: The fire pit is very well built and provides decent protection from the wind. The site’s grill is both rusted and broke and gets a 1 out of 5 on the “I wouldn’t put something that’s going in my stomach on that thing” scale. It is, however, a fantastic pit to build a good sized fire in and while away the evening hours. The only real accessory on the site is a single log bench beside the fire pit. Makes for a decent surface to set out your cooking gear and sit on while enjoying the fire, but that’s about it.

Swimability: Extremely swimmable. Despite the rocky shoreline the underwater terrain is soft, silky sand that feels like you’re walking through cotton candy. But isn’t sticky. Actually, walking through cotton candy would be gross, and this sand definitely wasn’t gross. So scratch the cotton candy simile. It feels like you’re walking through really nice sand. Anyways, it’s a great spot to swim. There’s also a large, slightly sloped rock in the water that makes for a great spot to sit and soak up the afternoon sun (while wearing an appropriate amount of sunscreen, of course).

Thunderbox: A decent distance from the site. You’ve got a partially obstructed view of the lake, so the lake has a partially obstructed view of you.

Views: Really good. The site faces north and west, but you can also see to the south from the shoreline. Great sunset view as well. There aren’t too many trees blocking the view of the lake from the site proper; you can see the water from the fire pit and tent spots easily.

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