• River: Dry Creek
• Length: 50 Miles
• Surface Area: 2,700 Acres
• Volume: 381,000 Acre Feet
• Drainage Area: 130 Square Miles
Lake Sonoma is a reservoir west of Cloverdale in northern Sonoma County, California, created by the construction of Warm Springs Dam. Access from U.S. Route 101 is by way of Canyon Road (from the south) from Geyserville, or Dutcher Creek Road (from the north) from Cloverdale.
The lake provides water for countywide growth and development, and for recreation. At full capacity, it has 50 miles of shoreline, a surface area of more than 2,700 acres, and holds 381,000 acre feet of water. Activities include boating, swimming, fishing, riding, hiking, camping, and hunting. Notable features include the Milt Brandt Visitor Center, the adjacent Congressman Don Clausen Fish Hatchery, and the Warm Springs Recreation Area below the dam.
Pomo people had lived in the Dry Creek area since at least the 18th century, and some of them resisted the creation of the lake. Archaeologists at Sonoma State University have written about the prehistory and history of Warm Springs Dam, Lake Sonoma, and the Dry Creek Valley.
The US Army Corps of Engineers built Warm Springs Dam across Dry Creek. Completed in 1982, this rolled-earth embankment dam is 319 feet high, 3,000 feet long, and 30 feet wide at the top. It contains 30,000,000 cubic yards of earth. The dam aids in flood control, and a hydroelectric plant produces electricity from the water released downstream. A minimum amount of flow must be maintained in Dry Creek to allow fish migration.
Lake Sonoma offers 96 drive-in campsites and two group sites at the Liberty Glen campground. The campground is located on a ridge-line overlooking Lake Sonoma, each campsite includes a fire-pit, picnic table and tent area, with primitive facilities and no potable water.
There are an additional 15 secluded campsites surrounding the lake: 14 can be reach by boat and 11 can be reached by hiking or horseback.