Enlarged Lake Hemet Splashing Eagle Water Park opens for summer season

Swimmers enjoy playing on the large inflatable water toys at Lake Hemet’s Splashing Eagle Water Park now open to the public at the mountain lake recreation area off Highway 371 near Mountain Center. Tony Ault photo
Swimmers enjoy playing on the large inflatable water toys at Lake Hemet’s Splashing Eagle Water Park now open to the public at the mountain lake recreation area off Highway 371 near Mountain Center. Tony Ault photo

The summer vacation and recreation season began at Lake Hemet Memorial Day weekend with an estimated 2,000 campers occupying more than 300 improved campsites including 10 new six-person cabins. The campers also enjoyed the official opening of the expanded Splashing Eagle Water Park.

“We are completely booked for the weekend,” said Jeffery Richter, Lake Hemet maintenance supervisor and safety officer as he made his rounds on the campgrounds, marina and the Splashing Eagle Waterpark. The California Parks Company, with its headquarters in Red Bluff, California, manages Lake Hemet Municipal Water District’s Lake Hemet Campground. The Lake is located on the Palms to Pines Highway 371 near Mountain Center.

In the last three years California Parks management has brought in, with the District’s approval, the Splashing Eagle Water Park that is steadily becoming more popular with campers. Last year the Water Park had 10 large plastic air-filled water toys. This year the Water Park was enlarged and 10 more large water toys added.

Swimmers can climb, teeter totter, jump on a giant trampoline, or slide down a mountainous slide on a huge water-play structure in the center of the 470-acre swim park cove.

A tiny tots’ area was also established in the Water Park’s expanded area. Campers can also rent kayaks from the Water Park and this year a Cali Parks Grill food truck is open serving hamburgers, hot dogs, french fries and a variety of soft drinks for reasonable prices.

Entrance to the Splashing Eagle Water Park is $15 a day for adults and $10 a day for children in the tiny tots area. The water park has four to five trained lifeguards on duty during operating hours from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily during the summer, said Sylvia Atondo, Park general manager. The Water Park requires all swimmers, children and adults, to wear life vests that are furnished on admission. The Water Park fees are in addition to the regular camping fees.

Tonnie Macias and her 2-year-old charge Frank Murrillo had just been fitted with life vests and were going to enjoy the tot pool. “We like it here. We always come up in a group. It’s really good and so clean.”

The cabins rent for $175 a night, but costs may be shared. Joe and Corrine Gomez, regular yearly campers at Lake Hemet decided to try out one of the cabins during the holiday. Relaxing outside the cabin Joe said the cabins, “are really nicely done and have all your needs. Corrine said, “We love relaxing here and are expecting my sister and her husband to join us here.”

The Lake also invites guests to use it “Rent My Tent” program. For $12 a day guest can stay and use the rental tent until sundown with late checkout.

The Marina has a selection on Deluxe and Standard pontoon boats, 12-foot outboard motor boats for rent. On arrival guests can call the marina kiosk to find out boat prices and availability or go the marina and talk to the staff.

Fisherman at the lake are finding the water level, thanks to the heavy rains this year, have improved the fishing and the lake is stocking fish more often.

“The water is about a foot or two below the spillways at the dam now,” Richter noted.

Lake Hemet has many other opportunities for fun and enjoyment all year including long term affordable living and season passes for the lake and the swim park. For more information about the lake call the Hemet Lake kiosk at (951) 205-1479 or see the Lake Hemet website for up-to-date information www.lakehemetrecreation.com.

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