Palomar Mountain State Park

UPDATE (June 12, 2020) - As California State Parks begins working with locals 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, it is important for visitors to continue to practice physical distancing and avoid congregating with people outside their immediate household. Everyone has the responsibility to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

Here are some guidelines for people visiting Palomar Mountain State Park:

What is open now?
The following is open the park:
  • Campgrounds will open at limited capacity to maintain social distancing and avoid large group gatherings starting June 12. For more information about camping, visit www.parks.ca.gov/COVID19Camping. To make a reservation, visit www.ReserveCalifornia.com or call 800-444-7275. Walk-ins will NOT be allowed.   
  • Doane Valley Campground.
  • Silvercrest Day-use.
  • Doane Pond Day-use.
  • Boucher Hill Day-use.
  • Very limited parking is now available to the public.

What is currently closed at this park and throughout the State Park System?

At this park:
  • Cedar Grove Group Campground

Statewide:
  • 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.
  • 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?

Yes, please see below:
  • 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: wear a face covering whenever you are within six feet of another person who is not a member of your family or household.
  • Be Prepared: Bring exact cash, $10, for day use. 

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.

Phone Number

(760) 742-3462

Max. Trailer Lengths

Trailer: 24 Feet
Camper/Motorhome: 27 Feet

Park Hours

dawn ‘til dusk

Dogs Allowed?

Yes
Dogs allowed in the campgrounds, on designated paved park roads, and on the trail around Doane Pond and Myers Fire Road.

Driving Directions to Palomar Mountain SP

Palomar Mountain State Park features spectacular views of the Pacific, camping, picnicking, hiking, and fishing (trout) in Doane Pond. Coniferous forests cover much of the 1,897, in contrast to the dry lowlands surrounding the mountain. This is one of the few Southern California areas with a Sierra Nevada-like atmosphere.

Location-Directions
The park is off Highway 76, up Highway S6, then left on Highway S7 at the junction near the mountaintop.


Camping and Lodging

Visitors will be able to reserve campsites and lodging six months in advance from the current date. Bookings may extend from the arrival date to the desired departure date – based on availability and the park’s maximum stay rules.

Upcoming Park Events

No events scheduled at this moment.

OVERNIGHT FACILITIES
Family Campsites
Group Campsites
RV Access
TRAIL USE
Hiking Trails
DAY-USE ACTIVITIES & FACILITIES
Historical/Cultural Site
Picnic Areas
Env. Learning/Visitor Center
Fishing
Interpretive Exhibits
Vista Point
Geocaching
OTHER FACILITIES & VISITOR INFORMATION
Parking
Restrooms / Showers
Restrooms
Drinking Water Available

To keep your visit to Palomar Mountain State Park an enjoyable experience, please do not feed the wildlife and keep your campsite and picnic areas clean of trash and food.  This will help protect you from diseases that can be transferred from wildlife to humans and will help make your outdoor experience a fun and safe time.  For more information about the importance of keeping the wildlife's diet natural, click on the following link "Please Don't Feed Park Wildlife".

Due to the threat of the Goldspotted Oak Borer spreading throughout San Diego County, no oak firewood will be allowed into Palomar Mountain State Park.   Wood can be purchased at the park or you can bring other species of firewood, such as pine or eucalyptus.

To find out more about this pest, please go to http://ucanr.edu/sites/gsobinfo/

Palomar Mountain ImageThe beautiful forest and mountain meadows of Palomar Mountain State Park are in northern San Diego County, high atop the west side of Palomar Mountain. Large pine, fir and cedar trees make the park one of the few areas in southern California with a Sierra Nevada-like atmosphere. The park features camping, picnicking, hiking, and fishing (trout) in Doane Pond. Coniferous forests cover much of the 1,862 acres, in contrast to the dry lowlands surrounding the mountain.

Elevation within the park averages 5,000 feet above sea level, making evenings cool even during the summer. A number of vista points offer spectacular panoramic views both westerly toward the ocean and inland toward the desert, particularly from Boucher Hill Summit, which has been listed in the Sierra Club's "Hundred Peaks Section" since first published in 1946. There, you'll also find the historic Boucher Hill Fire Lookout.

Palomar Mountain Image

The park is open from dawn 'til dusk daily. Reservations are highly recommended for camping during peak season. Day use fees are $10.00 per vehicle, cash or check only. Trails are open to foot traffic only, and dogs and mountain bikes are not allowed on trails. Please note that there are no gas stations on Palomar Mountain.  For more information, visit http://www.palomarsp.org/

 

Palomar Mountain imageFrom Highway 76, either of two roads can be used to reach the park. The one from Rincon Springs (County Road S6) is scenic but rather steep and winding. County Road S7 from Lake Henshaw is longer, but its gentle grade makes it more suitable for heavily loaded vehicles and those pulling trailers. Please note that there are no gas stations on Palomar Mountain. If you're using GoogleMaps or MapQuest, the park's physical address is: 19952 State Park Rd. Palomar CA 92060.

The online video journal of the Colorado Desert District covering Anza-Borrego Desert State Park®, Cuyamaca Rancho State Park and Palomar Mountain State Park.

       

California State Parks Kid's Safari goes to Palomar Mountain State Park and explores around Doane Pond.

Additional Visitor Services
  • County of San Diego (Environmental youth education camp)

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