Lake Clementine (also known as North Fork Lake) is a reservoir at an elevation of 718 feet (219 m) on the North Fork American River Canyon below the picturesque gold rush era town of Auburn (elev. 1200') in northern California. It was created in 1939 when the North Fork Dam, a 155-foot (47 m) tall variable radius arch dam, was completed by the Army Corps of Engineers for the purpose of containing gold mining debris washing downriver. It is open to boat traffic, a waterskiing and wakeboarding spot during the summer. However, many days the lake is closed to wakeboarding so that the lake may be quietly enjoyed for kayaks, rowing, and fishing. It features steep forested canyon walls and contains several large high quality limestone deposits, one large vertical outcropping of which is known as Robbers Roost, and offers climbing and caving opportunities for the adventurous. A popular hiking, running, and mountain biking trail courses from the dam area, continues downstream below the 780' high Foresthill Bridge, linking Lake Clementine to the North and Middle Forks American River Confluence area below the dam. The trail also connects to a large-network hiking, running, and mountain biking trail system stretching eastward into the Sierra Nevada mountain range near Lake Tahoe. Because the dam is designed so that the river flows over its top, a waterfall is created that grows impressively large in winter and spring when rain and snowmelt cause high river flows.
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