Day Use Hours: Sunrise to Sunset
D. L. Bliss State Park
Here are some guidelines for people visiting D.L. Bliss State Park:
What is open now?
D.L. Bliss SP is open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. to active recreation with restrictions in place to encourage social distancing.
- Day-use parking is now available to the public. Parking is $10.
- All trail systems are available and active recreation will be permitted.
- Outdoor restrooms will be available.
- Campgrounds FOR EXISTING RESERVATIONS ONLY starting June 22. Walk-In campsites are not available. For more information about camping, visit www.parks.ca.gov/COVID19Camping. To make a reservation, visit www.ReserveCalifornia.com or call 800-444-7275. Group campsites are not currently available.
- Visitor Center during business hours for fee collection, information, restrooms, and gift shop. Limited visitor access to exhibits inside building. Masks are required in public buildings.
What is currently closed at this park and throughout the State Park System?
- Many campgrounds across the state remain closed until further notice. Some campgrounds have started to reopen with modifications. For more information, please visit www.parks.ca.gov/COVID19Camping.
Are there any new visitor guidelines?
- Stay Local: Stay close to home. Walk or bike into the park. Parking is very limited. Do not take road trips to parks and beaches or to neighboring states.
- Stay Active: Keep walking, jogging, hiking and biking. Watch for one-way trails.
- Stay Safer at 6 Feet: Maintain a physical distance of 6 feet or more. Gatherings, picnics and parties are not allowed. Visitors will be asked to leave if there are too many people at the park, beach or on trails to allow for the required physical distance.
- Stay Clean: Be prepared. Bring soap/sanitizer and pack out all trash.
- Stay Covered: The state now requires you to wear a face covering in most indoor settings and public outdoor spaces when you cannot maintain physical distancing of six feet or more from people outside of your immediate household. For details, please visit CDPH’s guidance here. Visitors should also abide by their local county health orders.
Thank you for your patience and continued support of California State Parks as we work to limit your risk for exposure to COVID-19 in the outdoors. For more information, please visit parks.ca.gov/FlattenTheCurve.
SUMMER: $10 fee per vehicle is due for entering the park.
The day use parking areas at the beaches and at the Rubicon trailhead are extremely popular during the summer months and are often FULL by mid morning. We recommend arriving early in the morning or late in the afternoon for best chances of finding a parking space. When the parking lots are full, day use vehicles will not be allowed into the park - No drop-offs/pick-ups, though pedestrians may walk the two mountainous miles to the beach. Day use hours are sunrise to sunset. Dogs are not allowed on the beach or trails. Amplified music is only allowed with a permit. Thank you for your understanding.
During the off-season D.L. Bliss State Park closes to vehicular traffic for the season. When the park gate is closed, pedestrians may park at the Visitor Center (closed) parking lot near highway 89 and access the park from sunrise-sunset. It is an approximately 1 mile hike from the Vistor's Center to the closest Rubicon Trailhead, and a steep 2 mile hike to the beaches. All park regulations apply during the off-season. No restrooms or water available. Closest food and beverage are in South Lake Tahoe - 10 miles south. Closest restrooms are at Sugar Pine Day Use Area - 7 miles north.
Dogs at D.L. Bliss
Dogs are NOT allowed on the beaches, trails, or off-trail (including the bouldering areas). Dogs on a 6' leash are allowed in the campgound and picnic areas, as well as on paved roads. Dogs may not be left unattended. Dog regulations are strictly enforced YEAR-ROUND. Please do not leave your dog in a vehicle and plan accordingly. Here are some boarding options if you are away from home.
The campsite fee ($45 for Beach Camp and $35 for all others) includes one vehicle. The max trailer length is 15'. The max motorhome length is 18'. This is a historic campground with small roads, small campsites and small parking pads. This campground does not have hook-ups, however, there are showers and a dump station available for registered campers.
This 2020 summer, D.L. Bliss campground offers family campsites and no group campsites. Lake Tahoe is a popular destination and reservations are required this year. For information on 2020 summer reservations, go to reservecalifornia.com or call 800-444-PARK - Reservations may be made 6 months in advance of your arrival date.
Check In - 2 pm Check Out - Noon
Generator Hours 10am - 8pm Quiet Hours 10pm - 6am
2 Vehicles allowed per campsite Children must have helmets for bicycles/scooters/skateboards
8 people allowed per campsite Dogs must be leashed and never unattended
Vehicles must be parked on pavement Amplified music is only allowed with a permit
Food must be stored DAY and NIGHT All CA vehicle regulations apply - no passengers in truckbed
Food Storage Locker Information - Important and required.
All food, beverages, and toiletries are required by law to be stored in provided food lockers except when food is being prepared or eaten. Black bears are currently very active at D.L. Bliss! Metal bear-resistant food lockers are provided in each campsite. Ice chests may NOT be stored in vehicles and shall be stored in food storage lockers. The inside dimensions of the food lockers 36" deep, 43" wide, and 22" high. Violations will be cited. Food, beverages, ice chests, and trash must be stored in food lockers during NIGHT and DAY hours.
Location - Directions
D.L Bliss SP is located 17 miles south of Tahoe City on Highway 89, and approximately 2 miles north of the Vikingsholm Parking Lot at Emerald Bay.
- Tahoe Adventure Company (Hiking, biking and kayaking)
Seasons/Climate Recommended Clothing
Summer temperatures range from about 75-80 degrees F during the day to the low 40s at night, and winter temperatures average from a high of 40 to lows in the teens and 20s; Winter temperatures may dip below 0 degrees F.
High Sierra weather is varied and can change abruptly. It is recommended to bring layered clothing and check weather updates. Weather forecast is available at NOAA.
Chains and/ or 4 wheel drive are frequently required during the winter season. For up to date road conditions, call the Caltrans road hotline at 1800-427-ROAD, or visit the Caltrans website.
D.L. Bliss State Park is located off of Highway 89.
Balancing Rock Nature Trail
The Balancing Rock, "tons of granite resting precariously on a slender stone base", has long been a natural attraction on Lake Tahoe's western shore. Visitors to the Lake Tahoe area in the late 1800's and early 1900's enjoyed being photographed next to this geological marvel.
Today, the Balancing Rock is the feature attraction of a short, half mile self-guided nature trail in the northwest section of D.L. Bliss State Park. The granite of this large rock began weathering more rapidly at the joint plane, an extensive horizontal crack that is easily seen at its "waist".
The overlying rock weighs around 130 tons and is now balanced on the rock below. This precarious remnant of granite rock will eventually fall when enough material has eroded away to break the equilibrium between the two pedestals.
About the Park
Campers and day use visitors enjoy swimming or scuba diving in the crystal clear water of Lake Tahoe, picnicking, relaxing on the warm sand of Lester Beach or Calawee Cove, and hiking the Rubicon Trail, Lighthouse Trail, and Balancing Rock Trail. Lester Beach is a popular location to launch your kayak, paddleboard, or canoe, but keep in mind that trailers are not allowed in the day use parking lots. Please check weather and wind conditions before venturing out on the lake.
The grandeur of the parks and their setting is a product of successive upheavals of the mountain-building processes that raised the Sierra Nevada. From promontories such as Rubicon Point in D.L. Bliss State Park you can see over one hundred feet into the depths of Lake Tahoe.
The park is named for a pioneering lumberman, railroad owner, and banker of the region. The D.L. Bliss family donated 744 acres to the State Park system in 1929.