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Castle Rock State Park (California)

Castle Rock State Park
The Santa Cruz Mountains from Castle Rock State Park, with Monterey Bay in the distance.
Castle Rock State Park (California) is located in California
Location Santa Cruz, Santa Clara, and San Mateo Counties, California, USA
Nearest city Los Gatos, California
Area 5,242 acres (2,121 ha)
Established 1968
Operated by California Department of Parks and Recreation

Castle Rock State Park is a state park of California, USA, located along the crest of the Santa Cruz Mountains. It embraces coast redwood, Douglas fir, and madrone forest, most of which has been left in its wild, natural state. Steep canyons are sprinkled with unusual rock formations that are a popular rock climbing area. The forest here is lush and mossy, crisscrossed by 32 miles (51 km) of hiking trails. These trails are part of an even more extensive trail system that links the Santa Clara and San Lorenzo valleys with Castle Rock State Park, Big Basin Redwoods State Park, and the Pacific Coast. Castle Rock is the starting point of the Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail, a 30-mile (48 km) trail that leads to Waddell Beach north of Santa Cruz. There are two walk-in campgrounds within the park for overnight backpacking. The 5,242-acre (2,121 ha) park was established in 1968.[1]


  • Location 1
  • Usage and activities 2
  • Pending closure 3
  • Gallery 4
  • See also 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7


The park is located on California State Route 35 just 2.5 miles (4.0 km) southeast of the junction with State Route 9. It is located almost entirely in Santa Cruz County.

Usage and activities

Castle Rock State Park is suitable for many activities. There are two walk-in campgrounds for overnight hikers, many trails for day-hikes, rock climbing routes, and picnic areas. Dogs are not allowed on the trails or in the campgrounds, and horses allowed only on designated trails.

Pending closure

Under Governor Brown's current budget proposal this park was going to close. This would mean that visitors couldn't enter the park, and rangers would no longer staff the park. Garbage collection would cease and crime would have increased without the presence of park rangers.[2]

California Assembly Bill 42 was signed into law on October 5th, 2011. This bill allows state parks to enter into operating agreements with non-profit organizations.[3] The Portola and Castle Rock Foundation has been formed to help support Portola and Castle Rock State Parks.[4]

On March 14th, 2012 the park was removed from the state park closure list for a one-year reprieve based on a $250,000 donation by the Sempervirens Fund.[5]


See also


  1. ^ "California State Park System Statistical Report: Fiscal Year 2009/10" (PDF). California State Parks. p. 30. Retrieved 2011-10-29. 
  2. ^ "As We See It: Brown still can save state parks". Santa Cruz Sentinel (Santa Cruz, Calif.). 2011-05-19. Retrieved 2012-03-17. 
  3. ^ "Save Our State Parks". California State Parks Foundation. Retrieved 2012-03-17. 
  4. ^ "Portola and Castle Rock Foundation". California State Parks. Retrieved 2012-03-17. 
  5. ^ Rogers, Paul (2012-03-14). "Castle Rock State Park saved from the closure list". San Jose Mercury News (San Jose, Calif.). Retrieved 2012-03-17. 

External links

  • Castle Rock State Park
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