MADERA COUNTY, Calif. (KSEE24) – Sounded by tall pine trees is a lake south of Yosemite where families from all over California are making memories.

“A lot of people coming to this region are drawn here because they hear that there’s this beautiful little lake just outside of Yosemite,” said Brooke Smith with Visit Yosemite-Madera County.

Instead of driving up Highway 41, people are heading Road 222 to Bass Lake.

When they arrive, they realize that this is a destination in and of itself.

“Rather than be in Lake Tahoe, which is a huge lake, this lake is much more intimate,” said Mark Choe with The Pines Resort.

You’ll find small crowds on the shoreline but you will have big options for recreation on the water.

On this summer day, people were water skiing, wakeboarding, or just taking it easy on a canoe.

Many were on a boat, so I decided to join in on the fun and hop in the driver’s seat for a cruise around the lake.

“It’s a beautiful lake, we love our lake, we live here, our friends live here, our families,” said Michelle Miller of Miller’s Landing.

Not a fan of the water?

Bass Lake has options to explore on land.

You’ll find four campgrounds and several trails for biking or hiking fit for the experience or beginners.