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Big Basin Redwoods State Park
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Big Basin Redwoods State Park is the oldest state park in California. It was acquired in 1902. The park has miles of trails, which serve hikers and equestrians, link Big Basin to Castle Rock State Park and the eastern reaches of the Santa Cruz range. The Skyline to the Sea Trail threads its way through the park along Waddell Creek to the beach and adjacent Theodore J. Hoover Natural Preserve, a freshwater marsh. The park has a surprising number of waterfalls, a wide variety of environments (from lush canyon bottoms to sparse chaparral-covered slopes, many animals (deer, raccoons, bobcat) and lots of bird life (including Steller’s jays, egrets, herons and acorn woodpeckers.) The park is also home to stately redwood groves.
You can also access the park from Highway 1 north of Santa Cruz via Rancho Del Oso and Waddell Creek, sub units of Big Basin Redwoods State Park.
From Santa Cruz take Hwy 17 to Mount Hermon road. Follow Mt.Hermon to Graham Hill Road, turn right onto Graham Hill. Go 1 block to light, turn right onto Hwy 9, follow Hwy 9 to Boulder Creek. At the 236 intersection, turn left. Follow 236 approximately 10 miles to park gate.
Weekdays 9 – 5
Big Basin Redwoods State Park is looking for curious, caring individuals to become docent volunteers. You can be part of a team dedicated to helping the environment through education. Learn about the magnificent old-growth redwoods and Big Basin’s wonderful cultural history, and then share your knowledge with the public. Training begins in March. Please contact the park at (831) 338-8883 for information and applications.
The weather can vary during the day from foggy to sunny. Layered clothing is advised.
- Visitors Center
- Trailer sanitation station
- Food, lodging and supplies nearby
Camping is available year-round for $35 per night. After Nov. 1, only Huckleberry Campground is open. Each campsite includes parking fee for one vehicle. Extra vehicle(s) are $10 night. Firewood is available in the gift shop.
Juveniles under 18 years of age not camping with a parent or legal guardian must have WRITTEN permission to camp in the park. Permission letters must include the name of the park, the name of the juvenile, the dates they may stay and the name, address, phone number and signature of the person’s parent or legal guardian. The parent must be reachable at all times during the juvenile’s visit. Children 14 years of age and under may not camp without a parent present during the stay.
There are ADA-compliant trails at the park — learn more in the Hilltromper Wheelchair-Friendly Trails Guide.
For more info on how you can support this park, visit Mountain Parks Foundation.