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Organization Title

Castle Rock State Park

Contact Information

(408) 867-2952

Park Hours

Call the park

Driving Directions to Castle Rock SP

The park is located on Highway 35, just 2 1/2 miles southeast of the junction with Highway 9.

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Camping and Lodging

Online reservations are not available for this park.

Brochures and Campground Maps


Guided Hikes

Saturdays at 9:30 am through Labor Day Weekend
Magnificent rock formations and expansive views are only part of the Castle Rock story. Join us for a hike from the Castle Rock Outcrops to Castle Rock Falls as we discover how all the plants and animals are connected.  Dress in layers and bring plenty of water and snacks. This hike is a little less than 3 miles and will last about 2 hours. Meet at the Entrance Kiosk. Event is free, parking is $8 and supports the park. For more information, please call State Parks Naturalist Interpreter Rose Nelson at (831) 291-8273 or email Rose.Nelson@parks.ca.gov.

Welcome to Castle Rock

Castle Rock State Park is a land of sculpted sandstone, lush forests, and sweeping vistas. From one of the highest ridges in the Santa Cruz Mountains, park visitors enjoy hiking, backpacking, and horseback riding. Rock climbers explore the park's caverns and rocks, including the namesake Castle Rock. Plant-lovers come for California black oaks, knobcone pines, and high-elevation coast redwoods. The park’s 34 miles of rugged trails conveniently connect to an extensive trail system that links the Santa Clara and San Lorenzo valleys to nearby Big Basin Redwoods State Park and open space preserves on the Skyline to the Sea Trail

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Primitive campsites for backpackers are the only overnight facilities. Equestrians are urged to call ahead for current trail information, and smokers are advised that, due to high fire hazard, smoking is prohibited on the trails within Castle Rock State Park.

Please Remember
   
 • Park hours are from 6 a.m. to sunset, including all trails. Only campers registered in backpack trail camps may remain in the park overnight.

 • Except for service animals, dogs are prohibited throughout the park. 
 
 • Glass containers and smoking are prohibited throughout the park. 

 • Bicycles may be ridden only on the Skyline and Service Road trails.

 • Horses are permitted on designated equestrian trails only. Please check the map before your ride.

 • Firearms or any device capable of harming any person or animal are prohibited— including BB guns, spears, bows, arrows and slingshots.

 • Fires are permitted only in designated fire rings in the Castle Rock Trail Camp during the OFF fire season. Gathering firewood, including twigs and leaves, is prohibited. Firewood is sold at the Castle Rock Trail Camp.

 • Quiet hours are 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. daily.

 • Please respect private property rights and stay on designated trails.

 • All natural and cultural features are protected by law. Do not pick wildflowers, mushrooms, or other plants, or remove any park feature. Do not deface rocks with graffiti or feed, disturb, or harm wildlife.

 • Beware of rattlesnakes, ticks, and poison oak in camp and on trails.

Location - Directions

The park is located on Highway 35, just 2.5 miles southeast of the junction with Highway 9.
 Latitude / Longitude: 37.2317 / -122.1158

Seasons/Climate

Summer weather is hot and dry. In winter, mountain peaks may be dusted with snow, and temperatures can drop below freezing. In any season, the weather can change quickly.


Available Activities and Facilities at Castle Rock State Park

OVERNIGHT FACILITIES
Environmental Campsites
Hike or Bike Campsites
TRAIL USE
Hiking Trails
Horseback Riding
DAY-USE ACTIVITIES & FACILITIES
Historical/Cultural Site
Interpretive Exhibits
Vista Point
Geocaching
OTHER FACILITIES & VISITOR INFORMATION
Drinking Water Available