After completion of the Hetch Hetchy reservoir, Big Oak Flat and Groveland resumed their quiet ways of ranching, timber, and Yosemite tourism. However, the natural advantages of a benign climate, outstanding scenery, and interesting history caught the attention of Boise Cascade, a large forest products company and vacation resort developer, as a potential location for the development of a second home community.
Starting in 1968, Boise began the purchase of seven local ranches comprising 3,368 acres located 3/4 mile east of Groveland. Big Creek, a tributary of the Tuolumne River, enabled a 210-acre reservoir to anchor a planned, gated community called Pine Mountain Lake (PML). The Company also envisioned an airstrip, a golf course, and country club. The community was designed for approximately 3,500 homes. Water issues led Boise to reach agreement with the Groveland Community Services District to provide reliable water to future homes.
In July 1969 Boise opened sales offices in the old Groveland School and in the Groveland Hotel and began selling lots. Construction of the reservoir and marina, golf course and clubhouse, and key roads all occurred simultaneously in 1969 and early 1970. Pine Mountain Lake was filled by the spring of 1970 and construction of homes began to fill the development. After completion of several phases of the project, Boise turned over management of PML to the local homeowners’ association in 1974.
Today PML continues to flourish with ongoing sales of homes and the construction of new homes. Its permanent population is 2,800 with seasonal increases to over 5,000.
PML Airport from Above
(Photo, Pine Mountain Lake Association)