Loch Lomond is the central part of the Loch Lomond Recreation Area, which is located in the mountains above Santa Cruz. Of the variety of activities offered at the recreation area, getting out on a boat on the 175-acre reservoir lake may be one of the most enjoyable, and the park is set up to offer rentals to make the process streamlined and easy. The park store, located at the end of the Loch Lomond Way, rents out kayaks, pedal boats, row boats and electric-assisted row boats. As no personal boats are allowed on the lake, these boat rentals are the only way to get out on the mountain lake.
Loch Lomond provides drinking water for the Santa Cruz area, and its waters provide habitat for largemouth bass, trout and bluegill. The lake shore tends to be a popular spot for fishing, particularly among locals who head up to the lake in the afternoons to try for a quick catch. And while fishing from boats is also a popular option, the recreation area has developed docks and picnic areas around the lake that make for great paddling or boating destinations. Claire Innis Island, located not far from the boat rental docks, has picnic tables and grills. Further down the shore, Deer Flat Picnic Area has tables and grills and tends to be quieter than the shore nearer to the parking area. There are several coves that can also be explored by boat. Boat rental prices are $7.50 per hour with a two hour minimum for human-powered boats, $15 per hour for electric-assist boats. Additionally, there are options for day rates. Boats on a day-rate basis can be reserved with 24 hour notice, but reservations not necessary.
Park hours vary by season, but they can be found here. Dogs on leash are allowed in the recreation area, but they are not allowed on boats. Swimming is not permitted in the lake. Additional questions can be directed to the Loch Lomond office at 831.420.5320.
70 miles south of San Francisco, 35 miles north of Monterey, and unabashedly left of center, you'll find great surf, sandy beaches, redwood-covered mountains, laid-back towns, organic farms, and a burgeoning beer and wine scene. It's impossible to pick one place to visit in Santa Cruz County. Take a quick cruz of them all!