Mount Diablo State Park CCC Features

Summit Museum at Mount Diablo, photo by Joe Engbeck, California State Parks


Mount Diablo State Park
is one of the ecological treasures of the San Francisco Bay Area. CCC work included the Summit Museum and over ninety “Diablo Stoves” (outdoor cooking hearths). The Summit Museum is located in the historic stone building atop Mt. Diablo's 3,849 foot peak and was constructed by the CCC in the late 1930's of fossiliferous sandstone blocks quarried in the park The Diablo Stoves area is a Cultural Preserve inside the state park. Day use sites are examples of the rustic architectural philosophy which integrate visitor facilities into the natural environment and enhance visitor enjoyment of the outdoors.

Many visitors to Mount Diablo head straight for the Summit Museum to enjoy the famous view. Summer days can be hazy, and the best viewing is often on the day after a winter storm. Then, you can look to the west, beyond the Golden Gate Bridge, to the Farallon Islands; southeast to the James Lick Observatory on Mount Hamilton at 4,213 feet elevation; south to Mount Loma Prieta in the Santa Cruz Mountains at 3,791 feet elevation, north to Mount Saint Helena in the Coast Range at 4,344 feet elevation, and still farther north to Mount Lassen in the Cascades at 10,466 feet. North and east of Mount Diablo the San Joaquin and Sacramento Rivers meet to form the twisting waterways of the Delta. To the east beyond California's great central valley, the crest of the Sierra Nevada seems to float in space.

The CCC worked for nine years in Mount Diablo.  The work accomplished in the park demonstrates the variety of CCC activities in state parks in general.  As visitors travel up the main road which winds to the mountain top, they pass through areas developed for day-use and trails, both of which illustrate the skill and fine craftsmanship of the CCC.  Upon reaching the top, the experience is culminated by the fine views and vistas of the surrounding valleys and crowned by the Summit Building one of the largest and most important CCC building in the park system.

Diablo Stove with a high chimney, circa 1939
Mount Diablo State Park has these CCC features:


Summit Museum Building
Stone stairway, rock walls, rockwork basins
Elaborate culvert
Maintenance office, carpentry shop and auto shop,
Fire lookout tower
Masonry comfort station
Four residences, one with a garage
Seventy-Five day use sites
Six group campsites
Forty-six “Diablo Stoves”
Thirty-seven CCC era picnic tables
Two CCC era BBQs

The CCC carved out the Summit Trail at Mount Diablo in 1938

CCC crew member on road building tractor in 1935


Park Information:

Mount Diablo State Park
96 Mitchell Canyon Road
Clayton CA 94517
925-837-2525
Visit Website:  http://www.parks.ca.gov/default.asp?page_id=517


Pictured: Top Summit Museum at Mount Diablo, photo by Joe Engbeck, California State Parks. Center a high chimney Diablo Stove in 1939. Crew members building a camp stove in 1939 and enrollees enjoying the park picnic area that same year. Lower CCC crew members carving out the Summit Trail on Mount Diablo in 1938. Bottom CCC tractor operators building road at Mount Diablo in 1935.