Billy Creek Letterbox LbNA # 9417 (ARCHIVED)
|Placed Date||Jul 9 2004|
Welcome to beautiful Huntington Lake in the Kaiser Wilderness of the Sierra National Forest! This site is in the high sierras and, although the walk is easy, the access roads are closed in the winter months. The total driving time from Fresno will be 1 1/2 to 2 hours one way, but there are numerous lodging and camping facilities around the lake where you can extend your visit to explore this wonderful area.
From downtown Fresno, take Highway 168 east into the Sierras. From Cal State University-Fresno, for example, you will go south on N Maple Avenue toward Keats Avenue 0.1 mile and turn left onto E Shaw Avenue. In 0.6 miles you will merge onto Highway 168 east. Continue to follow the signs to stay on 168 east for 64.1 miles to cross the bridge at Big Creek where highway 168 becomes Huntington Lake Drive.
Along the way, you will be driving through the foothills and up to the high Sierras. You will pass Shaver Lake on your right and continue on 168 towards Huntington Lake. At 0.6 miles after you cross the Big Creek bridge you will come to the Lakeshore Post Office on your left. Lakeshore Resort will be on your right. (Feel free to stop at the general store or restaurant for a snack or meal).
From the Lakeshore General Store, continue on 168/Huntington Lake Drive for 3.5 miles to the Upper Billy Creek road sign. Take a left into the Billy Creek Picnic area and park. From the parking area, head towards the green transformer by the lake, passing the picnic area, until you hit a narrow trail. Take a right at the trail and follow it along the lake. You may see blue paint trail markers along this narrow path. The narrow trail will meet a larger dirt road at the campground. Take a left, following a 210 degree course along this dirt road, keeping the lake on your left and the campground on your right. You will pass a second green transformer on your left. Continue on to the tree stump with a smiling face on your right. From the tree stump, continue 17 adult paces along the road and stop at the bush with the samll wooden flag pole in it. (The road may be blocked with a bench at this point as well). Standing at the bush with the flag pole at your back, take 5 adult paces due south to a narrow trail and continue in a south west direction, with the lake on your left, to a large tree with a wooden trail marker on it. Continue in a north west direction along the trail with the low split-rail fence on your right. You will soon pass a split-log bench amphitheater on your right.
Feel free to take a detour up through the amphitheater towards the road to the front of the brown building. This is the "Billy Creek Guard Station Museum". Summer hours in July of 2004 were Wednesdays 12 noon to 4 pm; Saturday and Sunday 11 am to 4 pm.
After the amphitheater, continue along the path on the lake to Billy Creek. Cross Billy Creek on the split-log bridge. (Small children may need to be carried as there is no railing, but my sister-in-law managed it fine with a double stroller and her two-year-old twins.) After the creek, continue along the trail with the lake on your left. You will be following the telephone and power lines. Stop at the double wooden telephone pole. From here take 25 adult paces along the trail and stop. To your right there will be a long fallen log. The box is hidden behind and under the log, beneath some loose bark, two feet in from its east end. Enjoy.