Santa Margarita Lake, CA

Santa Margarita Lake Boating

Santa Margarita Lake is operated by San Luis Obispo County Parks. Neither personal watercraft nor waterskiing are allowed at the lake. There is no body to water contact allowed because the lake is a drinking water supply. Boats must be off the water soon after sundown.

There is a 5 MPH speed limit governing most of the lake. Popular boats on the lake are all kinds of fishing boats, patio boats, and even a few canoes and kayaks. Quagga and Zebra Mussel Boat Inspections and decontaminations are required before launching.

Current water level: Santa Margarita (Salinas Reservoir) Water Level

2016 Entrance Fees:

For a complete fee schedule see SLO County Parks Fee Schedule

Santa Margarita Lake Marina

Rocky Mountain Recreation operates the marina under a special use permit as a concessionaire for the San Luis Obispo County Parks.
Marina Store: (805) 438-1522
Hours: Wednesday - Sunday, 7:00 AM to about 4:30 PM (store hours vary by season, so best to call for specific hours)
Website: Santa Margarita Lake Marina
4695 Santa Margarita Lake Road, Santa Margarita, CA


Santa Margarita Lake Boat Rentals
Boat Minimum Each Additional Hour All Day
Deposits required for all rentals (cash or credit card)
Pedal Boat $15 for 2 hours $10 $50
Boat with Motor $25 for 2 hours $7 $60
Pontoon Boat
Seats 8
$65 for 2 hours $20 $165
Pontoon Boat
Seats 10
$75 for 2 hours $22 $185
Single Kayak $10 for 1 hour $7
Double Kayak $12 for 1 hour $9


Santa Margarita Boat Inspections

All boats entering Santa Margarita Lake must first pass a quagga and zebra mussel inspection. Park staff will perform visual inspections on all boats. Those found with water in the bilge or live well, or are not clean, they will not be allowed to launch. Boats coming from infected waters will also not be permitted in the lake.

In addition, decontamination procedures will also be implemented. Boaters will be required to have their boats decontaminated using hot water treatment. Mussels and their larvae cannot survive water temperatures in excess of 140 degrees.

Before arrival at the lake boaters should remove drain plugs and make sure the bilge, live wells, and integral coolersare dry. Check that the boat hull and trailer are free of mud, debris, and aquatic weed or algae.

Boat inspection tags from Lake Cachuma will be honored at Santa Margarita Lake.


Boat Launch Ramps

Boat-in Campsites

Santa Margarita Lakes maintains two Boat-In Campgrounds: Sapwi Campground and Khus Campground. They have primitive sites and may be reserved by individuals or groups (up to 5 sites maximum).
Reservations: (805) 788-2397

San Luis Obispo Rowing Club

The San Luis Obispo Rowing Club maintains a club boathouse at Santa Margarita Lake. They promote rowing both competitively and for recreation. They offer rowing lessons in the summer. The club welcome new members.
San Luis Obispo Rowing Club

Marine Services

VS Marine Boating Center
3380 El Camino Real
Atascadero, CA
(888) 842-1254

VS Marine Boating Center

Scott's Boat Repair
103B Nacimiento Lake Dr.
Paso Robles, CA
(805) 239-2628

Salinas Valley Marine
3 Spring Street
Salinas, CA
(831) 443-1616

Salinas Valley Marine

Pacific Marine Boat Repair
331 Pacific Street
San Luis Obispo, CA
(805) 544-4471

The Boat Doc
3850 Ramada Dr. #E1
Paso Robles, CA
(559) 271-1490


California's Greatest Lakes

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