Camp and Dive at Salt Point State Park

San Francisco Salt Point State Park

Added by Brian Heifferon

Direct access to 6 miles of coastline and 20 miles of trailsBeautiful, clean campgrounds situated between the sea and forestOnly a 2 hour drive for San Francisco

Camping at Salt Point Sate Park is a dream. You have your choice of camping by the sea at Gerstle Cove campground, or tucked up into the forest at the Woodside campground…and you can’t go wrong with either choice.

The rugged and beautiful coastline here is a popular destination for abalone diving and spearfishing, and features a protected underwater reserve where you can dive (no collecting). Trails depart from the campgrounds and lead about a mile (or less) to the beach. The two most popular hiking trails are the out-and-back coastal path from Salt Point to Stump Beach, and the loop through the pygmy forest. This pygmy forest, like others found along the coast, features dwarfed vegetation, and although the plants may look like they are struggling to survive, many of these shrubs and trees are more than 100 years old. Wildlife includes the long-tailed weasel, wild pigs, brown pelicans and other water birds, blacktail deer, raccoons, coyotes, and a variety of rodents. 

Reserve your campsite here.

Pack List

  • Tent
  • Reservation
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Sleeping Pad
  • Ice Chest
  • Food
  • Beer
  • Cooking Supplies
  • Firewood
  • Diving gear
  • Hiking gear
Read More

Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

Share

Activities:

Camping, Diving, Hiking

Skill Level:

Beginner

Season:

Year Round

Rating:

Features:

Adult Beverages
Bathrooms
Beach
Easy Parking
Forest
Scenic

Are we missing something?

Suggest an edit

How to Get There

over 1 year ago

Great spot for close proximity to the cove. Keep in mind that on holiday weekends, the campground can fill up pretty quickly, so be sure to make your reservations ahead of time. If you're planning on abalone diving, make sure you're on top of your permits and tagging the abs on the beach as soon as you come out of the water - the area is patrolled and fines can be pretty heavy.

over 1 year ago

almost 2 years ago

Spearfishing is plentiful the 4 times I've been. Definitely headed back this year. It's also one of the < 10 places you can legally take Abalone in CA (with a fishing license and ab card)...and it's really really fun.

almost 2 years ago

about 3 years ago

This is a great homebase for a weekend of adventures along the Sonoma coast. Be sure to grab all of your groceries before you get out too close to Salt Point. Not many options nearby and you don't want to get stuck late at night without food/beverages.

about 3 years ago

More Adventures Nearby

Hike through the Founder's Grove in Humboldt Redwoods State Park

San Francisco / Founders Grove Nature Trail

The Founder's Grove is easily accessed from Highway 101 in northern California. The grove is also on the Avenue of the Giants Scenic Highway.

Jake Young
2 Saves

Hike the Juniper Canyon, High Peaks, Tunnel Trail Loop in Pinnacles NP

San Francisco / Chaparral Trailhead Parking

Pinnacles National Park is located just over two hours outside of San Francisco (depending on the traffic).

Sonja Saxe
22 Saves

Backpack to Coast Camp in Point Reyes via Palomarin Trailhead

San Francisco / Palomarin Trailhead

Spanning from just north of the small town of Bolinas (about an hour north of San Francisco) across Inverness ridge and to the top of Tomales Point, Point Reyes National Seashore is as stunning park .

Noel Clark
8 Saves