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Sonoma Coast State Park
As State Parks increases access to the State Park System, it is critical that Californians continue to recreate responsibly in the outdoors as the pandemic is far from over.
Please take the time to read the information contained on this webpage to find out what is open and closed, and the COVID-19 guidelines for this park unit.
What is open now?
- Visitor Center at 50% occupancy.
- Beaches and trails.
- Day-use areas.
- Campgrounds. For more information about camping, visit www.parks.ca.gov/COVID19Camping. To make a reservation, visit www.ReserveCalifornia.com or call 800-444-7275.
What is currently closed at this park and throughout the State Park System?
At this park:
- Special events.
- Organized tours.
- Group campsites.
- Some park units and campground sites continue to be temporarily closed due to the pandemic, impacts from wildfires or other issues. Please visit the webpage of your local outdoor destination to find out if it is open.
- High public-use indoor facilities, including museums and visitor centers.
- Special events and tours continue to be canceled until further notice.
Are there any new visitor guidelines?
State Parks has implemented the following guidelines to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19 in the outdoors:
- Stay Local: Stay close to home during this pandemic period. If you or anyone in your household is feeling sick, please remain at home and plan your trip for another time.
- Plan Ahead:
- The ongoing pandemic response continues to be dynamic and fluid. Prior to leaving home, check the webpage of your outdoor destination you plan to visit to find out if it is open, if parking is available, and what visitor guidelines are in effect.
- Learn what safety precautions you should take when exploring the outdoors at parks.ca.gov/SafetyTips.
- SNO-PARKS: Make sure your vehicle is snow ready. A permit is required for each vehicle parked at a SNO-PARK site. Parking is on a first come, first-serve basis at all SNO-PARK sites. The public is advised that parking lots are filling up early in the day. Illegal parking is prohibited. More information can be found at ohv.parks.ca.gov/SNOPARKS.
- Stay Safer at Six Feet: No matter the recreational activity, maintain a physical distance of six feet or more. Your guests should only include those within your immediate household. This means no guests or friends, and no gatherings or parties. If there are too many people to maintain the required physical distance, please visit us on a different day.
- Boating: Do not raft up to other boaters or pull up onto a beach next to other recreators.
- Off-highway Vehicle Recreation: Do not ride next to others or pull up next to someone else as it could put you in close proximity to others. Stage 10 feet or more from each other during unloading and loading.
- Keep Clean: Be prepared as not all services may be available. Some restrooms will be temporarily closed to keep up with cleaning schedules. Bring soap/hand sanitizer. Please pack out all trash. Park units are experiencing heavy use and you can help alleviate the impact on park facilities.
- Stay Covered: The state requires you to wear a face covering when you cannot maintain a physical distance of six feet or more. Individuals must have a face covering with them at all times.
Although law enforcement entities have the authority to issue citations, the expectation is that the public is responsible for adhering to the advice of public health officials, visitor guidelines and closures.
California State Parks continues to work with local and state officials on a phased and regionally driven approach to increase access to state park units where compliance with state and local public health ordinances can be achieved. However, the situation remains fluid and park operations can change at any time. For information on statewide current closures and available services, please visit parks.ca.gov/FlattenTheCurve.
AdvisoryPOMO CANYON AND WILLOW CREEK ENVIRONMENTAL CAMPGROUNDS:
Environmental campgrounds closed until further notice.
Equestrian riders can access the Bodega Dunes trail system through the back side of Bodega Dunes campground via Bay Flat road. Horses are allowed on the beach south of the large, cement Bodega Dunes day use ramp. Horses and their riders are not allowed north of the day use ramp on the beach or north of the paved day use road/lot. Horses and their riders are allowed to be in the dunes south of the Bodega Dunes Day Use paved roadway. Dogs are not permitted in the dunes or on the beach.
Juvenile Camping Info:
Day Use areas are open to the public. Bathrooms are available at most locations. Please be prepared to pack it in and pack it out in some locations.
Long sandy beaches below rugged headlands, a craggy coastline with natural arches and secluded coves are features that make Sonoma Coast State Park one of California's most scenic attractions.
While the north coast weather can be foggy in the summer, it usually burns off by midday and the cool ocean breezes make the Sonoma Coast a haven for visitors seeking to escape the inland heat.
The Sonoma Coast is comprised of several beaches separated by rock bluffs and headlands. Sonoma Coast SP spans 17 miles from Bodega Head to Vista Trail which is located approximately 4 miles north of Jenner. Beachcombers, fishermen, sunbathers and picnickers can access the beach from more than a dozen points along coast Highway 1. The Salmon Creek Ranger Station is located on Highway 1 midway between the South Salmon beach parking lot off of Bean Avenue and the North Salmon Beach parking lot.
The weather can be variable and layered clothing is recommended. We suggest having a fully charged cell phone available for use in case of an emergency while visiting our parks.
Facilities - Activities
Bodega Head is the rocky headland that forms the entrance into Bodega Harbor. The harbor side provides a popular crabbing area along the jetty and the many hiking trails on the ocean side allow access to small, sandy coves and spectacular scenic views. The high cliffs offer excellent vantage points for observing migrating gray whales.
Aerial photos of Bodega Head
Goat Rock, near the mouth of the Russian River, is known for its scenic shoreline and easily accessible sandy beach. Picnic tables and restroom facilities are also available. Goat Rock beach is home to a colony of harbor seals which are fun to watch, but please stay at least 50 yards from the seals, especially during pupping season (March - August.) Due to the protected status of the seals, DOGS are NOT allowed on Goat Rock Beach. Dog are allowed on Blind Beach which is off the south parking lot at Goat Rock. Dogs must remain on leash. Goat Rock is part of the Russian River State Marine Conservation Area (SMRCA) and fishing is not allowed from the north side of the south parking lot to Muniz Ranch. Periodically the Goat Rock gate closes to vehicle traffic during day use hours when dangerous ocean conditions prevail. When this happens, the conditions are monitored throughout the day and the parking lots reopen if/when conditions allow. When the road is closed under these circumstances, visitors are still allowed to walk in. Please be mindful of the dangerous water conditions that could jeopardize your safety. Never turn your back to the ocean. Always stay well above the highest water marks in the sand. Try to have someone with you or at least let someone know where you will be.
Aerial photos of Goat Rock
Shell Beach is a favorite location for beachcombing and tide pooling. It is used by schools as an outdoor classroom for the study of tidal pool marine life and enjoys a reputation as a prime fishing spot.
Duncan's Landing is famous for two things: as an early-day landing for loading small coastal ships with lumber and food products and for being the most dangerous point along the Sonoma Coast due to large and unpredictable surf. Heed the signs and stay off the rocks. The waves have come up to the parking lot and people have been swept off the rocks. In the spring the wildflower displays are spectacular.
Aerial photos of Duncan's Landing
Portuguese Beach & Schoolhouse Beach are beautiful sandy beaches surrounded by rocky headlands. Rock fishing and surf fishing are popular in these locations.
Aerial photos of Portuguese Beach
Aerial photos of Schoolhouse Beach
Salmon Creek Beach, where a lagoon forms as sand closes the mouth of Salmon Creek, is a popular summer destination. Nearly two miles of unbroken, scenic, sandy beach make this an excellent place for surf fishing, beachcombing, and picnicking. North and South Salmon beaches are popular with the local surfing community when the waves are good. No dogs, horses or fires are allowed on north or south Salmon Creek Beaches due to the Federal protection of the snowy plovers. The Western Snowy Plover is listed under the Federal Endangered Species Act as a threatened species. Loss of nesting habitat is due to human development, invasion of European beach grass and predation by ravens, foxes, domestic horses, dogs and cats.
Aerial photos of Salmon Creek Beach
Take care when visiting the beach
Like most north coast beaches, Sonoma Coast is NOT FOR SWIMMING. Strong rip currents, heavy surf and sudden ground swells make surf play dangerous. A small staff of well-trained lifeguards are usually on duty during the peak season, however with so much coastline to cover, they may not be immediately available.
It is especially important to keep children back from the highest water-line mark and never turn your back to the ocean. Many rescues and recoveries are made each year. Also, be careful of the bluffs and rocks. The shale formations are unstable and unsafe for climbing, so stay on the trails and heed warning signs.
Camping and Day Use Information:
Aerial photos of Wright's Beach & Campground
Bodega Dunes- Leashed dogs allowed in campground. No dogs allowed on Bodega Dunes Beaches or in the dunes. No group camping available. RV Filling station open and Dump Station CLOSED UFN -
Call ReserveCalifornia for camping reservations 48 hours to 6 months in advance. 1-800-444-PARK In our peak season there are 99 campsites available. We offer token operated hot showers, flush toilets, and a potable water filling station. Tokens for showers are available from the kiosk when it is open. The filling station serves both Wright's Beach and Bodega Dunes. Maximum trailer length is 31' and hook-ups are not available. Maximum occupancy is 8 people per campsite. All vehicles must park on the paved parking pads. Any vehicles that do not fit on the paved parking pad may be taken to the overflow parking lot. Bodega Dunes does not offer group camping.
The day use area includes a boardwalk that overlooks a classic sandy beach. Horses and their riders are allowed only to the south of the day use ramp. No dogs, fires or camping are allowed anywhere on the beach as a measure to protect the snowy plovers. The Western Snowy Plover is listed under the Federal Endangered Species Act as a threatened species. Loss of nesting habitat is due to human development, horses, invasion of European beach grass and predation by ravens, foxes, domestic dogs and cats. **Many of the campsites at Bodega Dunes have been renumbered, please verify the correct campsite number before registering.
Hiker/Biker site at Bodega Dunes Campground
A communal site is available for on foot hikers and bikers at Bodega Dunes campground. The cost is $5.00 per person, per night. The site is located between sites 17 and 18. There is a fire ring, picnic table and food locker for communal use at this hike and bike site. This site is for the exclusive use of hikers and bikers that are not associated with any vehicle. Tokens for the showers are available when the kiosk is staffed. The token machine also accepts dollar bills.
Willow Creek Environmental Camp- No dogs on road, beach or in campground. No group camping available. No horses.
CURRENTLY OPEN -
When open, Willow Creek Campground offers 11 first-come first-served primitive campsites. There are fire rings, picnic tables, and pit toilets available. All of the walk in campsites are within 1/4 mile from the parking lot and there is no running water. This is the only state park campground located near the Russian River. The sites are mostly shaded by willows and are relatively close to a large beach for swimming and fishing. Blue heron, egrets, osprey, and occasionally river otters can be seen by the river. To protect the wildlife, no dogs are allowed. These sites are not on the reservation system and are first-come, first-served only. Please only camp in the designated campsites. Camping outside of these designated campsites may result in a citation and ejection from the campground. You must self-register prior to occupying a campsite. There is no credit card payment capability. Pay fees with cash or check. Willow Creek Campground is a dry campground which means there is no water available. Please pack in/pack out all trash.
Pomo Canyon Environmental Camp No dogs on road, trails or in campground. No group camping available. No horses.
Pomo Canyon Campground offers 21 first-come / first-served primitive campsites; these campsites are not on the reservation system. There are fire rings, picnic tables, and porta-potty toilets available. All of the walk-in campsites are within 1/4 mile from the parking lot. There is no running water. The campsites are shaded and located in a second growth redwood forest. To protect the wildlife, no dogs are allowed in the campground. Please camp in the designated campsites only. There is no camping allowed in the parking area. Camping outside of the designated campsites may result in a citation and ejection from the campground. You must self-register/pay prior to occupying a campsite. There is no credit card payment capability. Fees are payable using cash or personal check. Pomo Canyon Campground is a dry campground which means there is no water available. Please pack in/pack out all trash as there is no garbage service in this area.