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Now open: Fall Creek Unit, parking lots at Lighthouse Field State Beach

Great news! A portion of the Fall Creek Unit at Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park in Felton has reopened for the first time since the CZU Lightning Complex Fire in August.

  • OPEN TRAILS: Bennett Creek, High School, Kiln Fire Road, South Fork, Truck, North Fall Creek (between Cape Horn trail and Bennett Creek Trail)
  • CLOSED TRAILS (marked red on map): Lost Empire, Pine Flat, Sunlit, Tan Oak, Big Ben, Ridge, S-Cape, North Fall Creek (between Cape Horn Trail and Big Ben Trail)

The parking lot off of Felton Empire Road also is open. Signage is in place at closed trailheads throughout the park. Please respect the closures; they are in place for public safety and to give the forest the opportunity to recover.

More good news — parking lots at Lighthouse Field State Beach on West Cliff Drive in Santa Cruz also are open again. Please remember the #ParksPledge when you visit:

  • Wear a mask.
  • Use parks and beaches for exercise only and avoid gathering in groups.
  • Keep close to home.
  • Maintain a physical distance of 6 feet or more.
  • Leave space between others when passing on trails.
  • Stay home if sick.
Stay up-to-date on park status by checking our website.

Holiday sale moves online; become a member and save 30% on purchases

The annual ParkStore Holiday Sale will be an online-only extravaganza this year. Shop local from the comfort (and safety) of your own home Friday to Sunday, Dec. 4-6. 

The sale will feature all your favorite park-related items: T-shirts with the iconic Michael Schwab artwork; nature-themed books; educational games and toys; stickers; hats and beanies; mugs; puzzles; posters and art; and more. Everything in the ParkStore Online will be 30% off for Friends members. 

Not a member? Join today. Your $50 membership supports local state parks and beaches, and includes a myriad benefits — including that deep discount during the Holiday Sale next month. Shop local! Shop at the ParkStore Online to support local state parks! #ShopSantaCruz2020

Your support of the Friends Fire Fund is making a difference — Thank you! 

In response to the wildfire, we quickly established the Friends Fire Fund to provide direct assistance for those most affected, followed by investments in recovery for our damaged parks.

Thanks to an incredible outpouring of support, as well as generous grants from the California State Parks Foundation and Mountain Parks Foundation, we’ve raised enough to support the State Park and Friends staff most impacted by the fires. We’re happy to announce personal Fire Fund grants have been quickly distributed to help cover those catastrophic losses. 

Park recovery work has begun. The Fire Response Fund at Community Foundation Santa Cruz County awarded us a grant to fund an innovative damage assessment that will allow us to begin recovery work at Big Basin. The Friends and State Parks team quickly swung into action, completed the fieldwork and are now compiling the information to move recovery forward. 

We’re proud of the work so far, which has been made possible by our generous park community! If you haven’t given already, we invite you to join us in this effort.


Photo contest winner announced!

Local photographer and State Parks super fan "LockedOnPhotog" won our #StateParksStaycation photo contest this summer and received a State Parks Golden Poppy annual day-use pass as a prize. Selected from more than a dozen entries, this shot of a babbling creek running amid mossy rocks was the perfect balance of motion and serenity. We all want to visit this spot for a few moments of peace. 

Thanks for the great photo, and for tagging us! Follow Friends on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for more amazing snapshots from our state parks and beaches, and tag your park pics with #thatsmypark for a chance to be featured.

Friends named a 'Great Nonprofit'

We are happy to announce we are one of the first winners of a 2020 Top-Rated Award from GreatNonprofits. Thank you — your support means the world to us!

Update your decor with a panorama

This eye-catching 22x50 poster shows the Central California coastline from San Francisco to Big Sur. Created by local artist Eric Knight, the panoramic Monterey Bay map will inspire you to plot future adventures. 

Proceeds from the ParkStore online support local state parks and beaches.

Monterey Bay Panorama - $32.99 Shop Now
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Copyright © 2020 Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks, All rights reserved.

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