Description - Placerville Ranger District is tucked between the Pacific Ranger District on the north and the Amador Ranger District on the south. Scenic ridgelines dominate the District: Plummer, Baltic, Plum Creek, Mill Creek, Alder, and Iron Mountain. Swift streams such as the Cosumnes and its tributaries rush throughout the District carrying both native and planted trout species.
- Five developed campgrounds offer over 100 campsites with drinking water, handicap facilities, and onsite recreations that include fishing, swimming, hiking, and mountain biking. If mountain climbing is your sport, then venture to Lovers Leap Campground. Dispersed camping is allowed practically anywhere that camping is not specifically prohibited.
Fishing opportunities are enjoyed on the District's many rivers and creeks. Silver Fork is just one of many destinations. Brown trout are resident in the river. Catchable rainbow trout are stocked every other week by California Dept. of Fish and Game from opening of season through July. Campgrounds serving this river are China Flat and Silver Fork campgrounds. There is piped water, picnic tables, handicapped accessible toilets, grills, and fire-rings, but no hook-ups.
Hikers have plenty of opportunity to enjoy trails. The Pony Express National Historic Trail winds through the northern reaches of the District while the 2,650-mile Pacific Crest Trail borders the eastern boundary. In general, off-highway vehicles can operate on any designated road or trail as long as it is dry enough to not be damaged and is not in a closed area. Most of the forest roads are out and back rides. Some areas have enough interconnected roads to make an enjoyable experience. Many non-motorized trails are open to hikers, cyclists and equestrian users.
For winter sports head to the eastern area of the District where Sierra at Tahoe, Echo Lakes Snow Park, and Echo Summit Snowpark offer full service resort facilities.
Maps are available at District offices.
Recreation - An array of recreations await on Placerville Ranger District: mountain climbing, horseback riding, hiking, mountain biking, backpacking, trout fishing, swimming, picnicking, off-roading, camping, winter sports.
Climate - A Mediterranean type climate extends over most of the Forest with warm, dry summers and cold, wet winters. Weather can change rapidly during all seasons of the year. Elevation plays a major role in temperature and precipitation. This precipitation falls mainly from October through April. At higher elevations, it comes mostly in the form of snow. Winter temperatures below zero and summer temperatures above 100 degrees indicate the normal seasonal spread.
Clouds can build up during the summer to produce spectacular thunderstorm activity. It is wise to pack for any season with clothing that can be "layered", ready to peel off or add on as the thermometer dictates. Always include some kind of rain gear.
Placerville Ranger District is tucked between Eldorado's Pacific Ranger District on the north and its Amador Ranger District on the south. It reaches as far east as the Toiyabe National Forest and as far west as the Placerville Ranger Station located along U.S. Highway 50.