Frequently Asked Questions
November 22, 2023
1. Why is California offering a park pass for fourth graders? Children’s physical, mental and social-emotional well-being is a priority for the State of California. Studies indicate that access to parks and green space can lead to improvements in children’s physical well-being, social-emotional learning and academic outcomes, with children experiencing reduced stress and demonstrating more enthusiasm for school. One study found that every $1 invested in trails for physical activity led to $2.94 in direct medical benefit. Every child should have easy access to parks. This program is one way we all can make that possible.
2. Who qualifies for this pass? Any fourth grade student who lives in California. For full terms and conditions, click here.
3. How do I get a pass? Getting the free pass online is simple. All that is needed is a name, address, phone number and email address. For individuals who do not have access to a smartphone, computer or printer, and/or do not have an email address, they can still get a pass by visiting a State Parks Pass Sales Office—click here for a list of locations—or by calling (800) 444-7275. For detailed information on the program and the list of participating park units, please visit parks.ca.gov/AdventurePass.
4. Where can I use the California State Park Adventure Pass? The California State Park Adventure Pass is accepted at the following 54 state parks:
- Anderson Marsh State Historic Park (Lower Lake)
- Antelope Valley Indian Museum State Historic Park (Lancaster)
- Anza-Borrego Desert State Park (Nearest cities – Borrego Springs and Julian)
- Armstrong Redwoods State Natural Reserve (Guerneville)
- Benbow State Recreation Area (Garberville)
- Benicia Capitol State Historic Park (Benicia)
- Big Basin Redwoods State Park (Santa Cruz)
- Calaveras Big Trees State Park (Arnold)
- California Citrus State Historic Park (Riverside)
- California State Mining and Mineral Museum (Mariposa)
- California State Railroad Museum (Sacramento)
- Castle Crags State Park (near Redding)
- Chino Hills State Park (Chino Hills)
- Clear Lake State Park (Kelseyville)
- Colonel Allensworth State Historic Park (Earlimart)
- Cuyamaca Rancho State Park (Julian)
- El Presidio de Santa Barbara State Historic Park (Santa Barbara)
- Empire Mine State Historic Park (Grass Valley)
- Folsom Powerhouse State Historic Park (Folsom)
- Fort Ross State Historic Park (Jenner)
- Fort Tejon State Historic Park (Lebec)
- Grizzly Creek Redwoods State Park (near Eureka)
- Hendy Woods State Park (nearest city – Philo)
- Henry W. Coe State Park (near San Jose)
- Hollister Hills State Vehicular Recreation Area (Gabilan Mountains, an hour drive from San Jose)
- Indian Grinding Rock State Historic Park (Jackson)
- Jack London State Historic Park (Glen Ellen)
- Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park (Crescent City)
- La Purísima Mission State Historic Park (Lompoc)
- Leland Stanford Mansion State Historic Park (Sacramento)
- Los Encinos State Historic Park (Los Angeles)
- Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park (Nevada City)
- Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic Park (Coloma)
- Millerton Lake State Recreation Area (Fresno)
- Mono Lake Tufa State Natural Reserve (Lee Vining)
- Monterey State Historic Park (Monterey)
- Morro Bay State Park Museum of Natural History (Morro Bay)
- Mount San Jacinto State Park (Idyllwild)
- Pacheco State Park (Hollister)
- Petaluma Adobe State Historic Park (Petaluma)
- Railtown 1897 State Historic Park (Jamestown)
- Salton Sea State Recreation Area (Indio)
- Samuel P. Taylor State Park (Lagunitas)
- San Buenaventura State Beach (Ventura)
- San Juan Bautista State Historic Park (San Juan Bautista)
- Seacliff State Beach (Santa Cruz)
- Silver Strand State Beach (Coronado)
- Sonoma State Historic Park (Sonoma)
- State Indian Museum State Historic Park (Sacramento)
- Sue-meg State Park (Trinidad)
- Sutter’s Fort State Historic Park (Sacramento)
- Tule Elk State Natural Reserve (near Bakersfield)
- William B. Ide Adobe State Historic Park (Red Bluff)
- Will Rogers State Historic Park (Los Angeles)
5. I’m a fourth grader. How do I get this pass? It’s easy! Have your parent or guardian create a profile on ReserveCalifornia.com. All we need is their name, address, phone number and email, and we will send them your free pass via email on the same day. If your parents prefer to talk to a person over the phone, have them call us at (800) 444-7275. California State Parks Pass Sales Offices can also help if your parents do not have an email address (click here for a list of locations). Spanish-speaking representatives are available online (via webchat) and by phone.
6. I’m a parent or guardian of a fourth grader. What do I need to do? Getting one for your fourth grade child is quick and easy. Set up a profile on ReserveCalifornia.com. All you need to do is enter your name, address, email address and phone number. You can also create a profile by phone at (800) 444-7275 or in-person at a Pass Sales Office. Click here for a list of locations.
Once you have your profile, visit ReserveCalifornia.com and access your account. Then simply add the California State Park Adventure Pass(es) to your shopping cart and complete the checkout process. (Passes are free.)
You will immediately receive your pass(es) in your email. You can use it by either printing it out or keeping it on your phone to show a uniformed state park staffer.
If you do not have an email address, you can still get a pass: Simply visit one of our Pass Sales Offices and they will help you print your pass. Click here for a list of locations.
Si usted prefiere acceder la información del programa en español, llámenos al 1-800-444-7275 o visítenos en las redes al ReserveCalifornia.com. Contamos con personal que puede asistirlo.
7. I’m a parent. Can I let my child get the pass by themselves? California State Parks is not legally allowed to ask children for any information that might identify them online, like email addresses or phone numbers. We ask that you get the pass for your child instead. Obtaining the free pass online is simple. All that is needed is a name, address, phone number and email address. For individuals who do not have access to a smartphone, computer or printer, and/or do not have an email address, they can still get a pass by visiting a State Parks Pass Sales Office—click here for a list of locations—or by calling (800) 444-7275. For detailed information on the program and the list of participating park units, please visit parks.ca.gov/AdventurePass.
8. What about homeschooled students? Any fourth grader who lives in California is eligible for the California State Park Adventure Pass, no matter how they attend school or how old they are. If they are a fourth grader or fourth grade equivalent, they qualify.
9. What if there is more than one fourth grader in my family? No problem! You can get California State Park Adventure passes for every fourth grader in your family. Visit parks.ca.gov/AdventurePass for more details.
10. How do I get the pass if I don’t have email access, a computer or a printer? If you do not have access to a computer or printer but you have a smartphone, you can still get the California State Park Adventure Pass online using your phone. Simply save the emailed pass to your phone so that you can show it to a uniformed park staffer when you visit the park. If you do not have access to a smartphone, computer or printer and/or don’t have an email, you can get the pass in person at any one of our Pass Sales Office locations throughout the state. State Parks staff will be able to assist you in printing your pass.
11. What if we lose the pass? You have several options to retrieve your pass:
- Log into your ReserveCalifornia account and reprint your pass.
- Call the ReserveCalifornia Contact Center at (800) 444-7275 or connect via webchat (8 a.m.–6 p.m. PT) and ask them to resend it to you.
- Visit one of our Pass Sales locations throughout the state for assistance.
12. Are there any limitations on this pass? Yes. This pass is only available for fourth grade students who live in California and is only valid at the 54 selected state park units. If your child is not a fourth grader or if they do not live in California, they do not qualify for this pass.
By using this pass, you and your family also agree to the official terms and conditions of the California State Park Adventure Pass detailed on our website at parks.ca.gov/AdventurePass.
13. Why is the California State Park Adventure Pass only for fourth graders? The State Park Adventure Pass program is a three-year pilot program that provides Californian fourth graders with free day-use access to 54 state parks. This pilot program mirrors the federal Every Kid Outdoors program, which provides fourth graders with free access to national parks. Providing fourth graders with free state park access is a great way to supplement the lessons they are currently learning in school. Additionally, fourth grade is a unique time in a child’s development where they begin to better understand how the world around them works in concrete ways, and they are more receptive to engaging with nature and the environment.
14. What other programs are available for students in parks? California State Parks offers a variety of access programs, including the following:
- Environmental living and studies programs
- Living history programs
- Outdoor Youth Connection
- Park Interpretive Programs
- Parks Online Resources for Teachers and Students (PORTS) Program
- For Schools
For detailed information, please visit www.parks.ca.gov/OutdoorAccessForAll.
The National Park Service also offers a similar fourth grade pass program. For more information, please visit them at Every Kid Outdoors.