Winton (formerly, Merced Colony No. 1, Merced Colony No. 2, and Windfield) is a census-designated place (CDP) in Merced County, California, United States. Winton is located 2.5 miles (4 km) north of Atwater, at an elevation of 177 feet (54 m). The population was 8,832 at the 2000 census. Winton was established along the original Santa Fe Rail Road and has grown only a very small amount since it was established. At one time, passenger trains would stop at this location. Winton was mentioned by Johnny Carson on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson in the early 1970s while reading information from a magazine. It was noted that, at the time, Winton had the highest crime rate for a city its size in the nation. Another note to some fame was the old Wagon Wheel Bar, which for years was a Hell's Angels bar.