French Meadows Reservoir is a manmade lake 36mi northeast of Foresthill, California, United States on the Middle Fork of the American River. The reservoir is 2.9mi long, 0.6mi wide, with 7.3mi of shoreline.Tahoe National Forest manages the recreational facilities which include five campgrounds, two group campgrounds and two paved boat launch ramps. Activities at the lake include powerboating, kayaking, canoeing, fishing, picniking and hiking. The reservoir is entirely within a state game refuge so no firearms, pellet guns or archery weapons are allowed.The elevation of the lake is 5263ft and is nine miles (14 km) from the crest of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range.HistoryThe reservoir was built in December 1964 with the construction on the Middle Fork of the American River of the L.L. Anderson Dam. The dam is rock-fill with earth core. The capacity of the reservoir is of water. French Meadows Reservoir is part of the Middle Fork Project for hydroelectric power generation and most of its water is diverted to the French Meadows Powerhouse, located along the north shore of Hell Hole Reservoir, by an underground tunnel. Releases from French Meadows Reservoir to the powerhouse began one year later, December 13, 1965. A minimal "fish flow" is released into the natural waterway of the Middle Fork American river for fish and wildlife habitat considerations. The project is operated by the Placer County Water Agency.
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