Crystal Lake Estate

Location: Nevada County, California

Price: $4.9 Million


Crystal Lake
Private Lake With Magnificent Lodge
Your Day At Crystal Lake
Imagine waking up in the morning to the sun glistening off your own private alpine lake. After fixing breakfast in the expansive kitchen and enjoying it in the great room, you head for the sandy beach and dock. There you choose your favorite boat and go for a row or paddle across the lake to the exposed granite to inspect the ancient Native American petroglyphs. Later, you grab a fishing rod or recline in a patio chair and soak in the serenity. After lunch, you head up to the tennis court for some basketball then jump in the lake for a swim. After resting on the beach or in a lakeside hammock, you grill dinner out on the patio. As the sun turns distant Signal Peak orange and red, you finish the day with s’mores cooked to perfection in the outdoor fireplace. Idyllic? Yes, and this experience can be yours at Crystal Lake.
Property Description
Crystal Lake is a 210 +/- acre mountain estate featuring a 5-bedroom lodge with hot tub and tennis court on the shores of a completely private alpine lake. The estate adjoins the Tahoe National Forest, allowing unlimited hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding and exploring with recreational vehicles. There are no other houses on the lake; it is for your personal enjoyment.

The lake is deep, crystal clear, and perfect for swimming and fishing. Jump off the dock or the granite rocks, or float near the beach and take in the wilderness-like setting. Surrounding the lake is a combination of granite escarpments, conifer forests, a mountain meadow, a sandy beach and a large wooden dock.

Situated at just under 6,000 feet in elevation, Crystal Lake is a year-round playground. Miles of endless snowshoeing, skiing and snowmobiling can be enjoyed from the property. The lodge is configured with a generator for backup electricity for an occasional power outage.

Recreation & Wildlife
The lake is usually about 75 degrees in the summer, refreshing, but warm enough to enjoy for hours. The sandy beach is great for relaxing, building sand castles, and warming up after a swim. Swimming across the lake can be fun for strong swimmers, but at 5,800 feet altitude you can get short of breath very easily. At the end of the dock the water is about 5 feet deep and great for cannonballs.

As you explore the lake, you can generally find turtles sunning themselves and see bird nests around the edges of the lake. A hike around the lake takes most of an afternoon and there are plenty of good picnic spots along the way. Enjoy dozens of petroglyphs on the exposed granite near the dam on your way by.

Another hike is north above the railroad tracks to overlook Grouse Ridge beyond Eagle Lakes. To the south, you can hike deep into the Tahoe National Forest to Kelly Lake or even Lake Valley Reservoir. The more adventurous can climb Indian Dome, Keisha Dome or venture up Cisco Butte. There are also miles of forest roads and dirt tracks for mountain biking. Lake Spaulding is a 10-minute drive and allows water skiing.

Wildlife habitat at Crystal Lake is thriving with an abundance of deer, bear, bobcat, coyotes, hawks, eagles, owls, songbirds, grouse, mountain quail, ducks, Canadian geese and numerous other species. The lake itself is home to trout, bass, catfish, bluegill and turtles.

MAIN HOUSE: The custom-built mountain-style house is a spacious 5,500 +/- square feet, and comfortably fits 2-3 families. Designed by local architect Brent Daggett and built by Bruce Ivy Construction, activities flow around the great room, which includes a soaring fireplace, high ceilings, and double-story windows that provide views over the lake and to the tree-covered mountains beyond. There is a hidden TV with DVD/VCR, and a full stereo system. The bar has a small fridge with icemaker and cabinets for glassware. The great room includes a spacious dining table that seats 12 comfortably, and opens to the kitchen.

The kitchen centers around a huge island and makes meal preparation enjoyable. It has two sinks with disposals, two dishwashers, a gas range, two ovens, a microwave, and a large Sub-zero fridge/freezer.
The loft overlooks the great room, and has a pool table, TV, card table, and plenty of games and toys for all ages.

The back common room has a TV/VCR and several couches, and is a great place for the kids to hang out and relax. There is also a twin bed.

Master: King bed, sitting area, fireplace, opens to patio and spa. Attached bathroom with deep tub and double shower.
Lakeview bedroom: Queen bed, attached bathroom with tub and shower.
Lakeview twin room: One set of twin bunk beds, and an additional twin bed, attached bathroom with tub and shower.
Twin bedroom: Two twin beds with full-size twin trundles, attached bathroom with shower.
King bedroom: King bed, attached bathroom with shower.
Other rooms include a half bath off the great room, walk-in laundry, nursery currently set up with bunk beds, and back entry/mudroom. The large three-car garage has plenty of room for all of your outdoor toys and equipment.

The patio features a large hot tub for relaxing in the sunshine or under the stars. There is also a gas grill and a charcoal grill for cooking out. A stone fireplace on the patio is perfect for s’mores, a great way to end a perfect day at Crystal Lake.

CARETAKER’S HOUSE: Near the entrance to the estate and out of sight of the main house and Lake, is the two bedroom one bath caretaker’s house. A New Holland Tractor, Thiokol Sno-Cat and other equipment are stored here for ongoing maintenance of the estate.

TENNIS COURT: Situated down a path and surrounded by conifer forests, the tennis court is the perfect place for exercise and friendly competition. The court has an adjustable basketball hoop that’s great for adults and kids. Also included is a picnic table for spectators and a handy water fountain. Just remember, the balls bounce higher and faster at this altitude!
The mountain passes through the Sierra all have a rich history with spectacular beauty. Crystal Lake, the stunning centerpiece of a 210-acre private estate near Donner Summit, is no exception.

The property was part of the Truckee Trail, the first wagon road over the Sierra Nevada that opened in 1844. The historic trail passed along Crystal Lake on the way to Six Mile Valley and Yuba Gap.

The lake was also a stop on the first transcontinental railway completed in 1869 and an art gallery for Native Americans who left their petroglyphs on the granite rocks on the east side of the lake.

This relatively busy transit hub, that once had a small hotel on the shores of the lovely lake that was enlarged in the 1920s to provide water for Southern Pacific’s freight trains, is now a world-class mountain retreat.

Broker’s Comments
There are very few opportunities to own a private Sierra alpine lake in California. Crystal Lake is truly remarkable and along with the lodge, dock and other amenities is a place that will provide unequaled times for your family and friends. Located on the West Donner Summit less than three hours from the San Francisco Bay Area you’ll be on the beach while others are just arriving at Truckee or Lake Tahoe.


Acreage, Topography, and Zoning
The zoning for the Crystal Lake Estate is Forest (FR), with a minimum acreage of 160 acres per parcel. Nevada County currently allows one residence per legal parcel on FR lands, as long as the building of a home meets general building department guidelines for rural mountain locations. The property consists of two legal parcels of 95.58 acres and 114.19 acres, Assessor’s Parcel Numbers 64-170-75 and 64-170-76, respectively. Any zoning/building questions should be confirmed with Nevada County Planning Department at 530-265-1222.


The Crystal Lake estate is located on the west slope of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, near Donner Summit off Interstate 80. Truckee is roughly 30 minutes away and Lake Tahoe is about 45 minutes from the property. The estate is less than 3 hours from the San Francisco Bay Area, or one can fly to Reno or Sacramento airports for a shorter drive.


Suggested Price is $4.9 million, subject to a sealed bid process. Call Terry Hundemer for more information and bid package.

All cash to seller.

NOTICE: Offering is subject to errors, omissions, change or withdrawal without notice, and approval of purchase by owner. Information regarding land classifications, potential profits, etc., are intended only as general guidelines and have been provided by sources deemed reliable, but whose accuracy we cannot guarantee.