Palomar Mountain State Park

This park unit is partially open. Please take the time to read the information contained on this webpage to find out what is open and closed, and what COVID-19 guidelines are in place. - (June 1, 2021)

What is open now?

  • Doane Valley Campground (pending weather conditions).
  • Silvercrest, Doane Pond, and Boucher Hill day-use areas (pending weather conditions).
  • Hiking trails throughout.
  • Cedar Grove Group Camp
  • Group picnic areas.
  • Special events under 50 people.

What is currently closed?

  • Special events over 50 people and tours continue to be canceled until further notice.

Phone Number

(760) 742-3462

Max. Trailer Lengths

Trailer: Up to 24 Feet
Camper/Motorhome: Up to 24 Feet

Park Hours

dawn ‘til dusk

Dogs Allowed?

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.

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

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.

Family Campsites
Group Campsites
RV Access
Hiking Trails
Historical/Cultural Site
Picnic Areas
Env. Learning/Visitor Center
Interpretive Exhibits
Vista Point
Restrooms / Showers
Drinking Water Available

Fire Restrictions-Palomar Mountain State Park

For current fire restrictions, please call (760) 767-4037

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

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


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.

Palomar Day Use fee includes Silvercrest Parking Lot, Boucher Lookout Parking Lot, and Doane Pond Parking Lot

  • Day Use Fee: $10 per vehicle
  • Senior Day Use (62 or Older): $9
  • Disabled Discount Day Use: $5 with State Parks Disabled Discount Pass

Palomar Mountain State Park Day Use Hours are: 8 AM to Sunset

Doane Valley Campground

  • Standard Campsite Fee: CS 1-31 = $40 per night
  • Senior Standard Campsite Fee (62 or Older): CS 1-31 = $38 per night
  • Disabled Discount Standard Campsite Fee: CS 1-31 = $17.50 per night with State Parks Disabled Discount Pass
  • Extra Vehicle: $10

Reservation can be made on Reserve California from April 1 to November 30.  First come, first serve from December 1 to March 31.

Cedar Grove Group Camp

  • GCG#1 = $130 per night includes 10 vehicles
  • GCG#2 = $130 per night includes 5 vehicles
  • GCG#3 = $130 per night including 5 vehicles

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.

This list of regulations is intended to make your camping stay at Palomar Mountain State Park a more enjoyable experience. Anytime during your stay, if you need assistance, please contact park staff and they will help you out.

Check in Time is 2:00 PM /Check Out Time is 12:00 PM (Sorry, No Exceptions)

  • Camping fees include entry for 1 vehicle and 1 legally towed vehicle or trailer.  Additional vehicles must register and pay additional fees (Currently $10.00 each vehicle.) Campsites are limited to 2 vehicles.
  • Campers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent / legal guardian, or provide, upon arrival, a letter from a parent / legal guardian granting permission to camp.  All juveniles must be in their own campsite at 10:00 PM.
  • Quiet hours are from 10:00 PM to 6:00 AM. Visitors are not allowed between 10:00 to 6:00 AM
  • Generators may be operated in the park between the hours of 10:00 Am and 8:00 PM.
  • Campsites are limited to 8 people maximum and is designed for individual family use. 
  • Parking is allowed in designated camping and day-use parking spaces. Parking off road is prohibited.
  • Vehicle speed limit in the campground is 15 mph maximum.
  • Dogs must be on a leash and attended at all times. Dogs are not allowed on trails.
  • Alcohol and glass containers are prohibited beyond your campsite.
  • Bicycles are restricted to the pavement and approved trails.
  • Helmets are required for those under 18 years old while riding bicycles, scooters, and skateboards.
  • Campfires are permitted in provided fire rings only. Firewood is available for purchase at the entrance station and camphost sites. Wood gathering is prohibited.
  • All State Park features (natural and cultural) are protected. Disturbance or destruction of these resources is strictly prohibited.
  • No person shall launch, land, or operate a powered unmanned aircraft or Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) within Palomar Mountain State Park.
  • Firearms and fireworks are prohibited at Palomar Mountain State Park.

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