Located in the heart of the beautiful Napa Valley wine country, the Park offers camping, picnicking, swimming, and hiking trails that go through stands of coastal redwoods as well as forests of Douglas-fir, tanoak, and madrone. Daytime visitors can enjoy a leisurely stroll in Ritchey Canyon on the Redwood Trail to view the delicate ferns and listen to the water splashing down the rocky creekbed. Bring your wine and cheese and picnic under the towering Douglas Firs.
WATER CONSERVATION September 4, 2008
Low rainfall and near drought conditions are prompting Water Conservation at Bothe Napa Valley State Park. Measures being taken include:
Water to fill R.V. tanks, has been shut off at the park's filling station
Pay Showers may not be available
The Pool closed for the season on Labor Day. Park conditions and website information will be updated when the groundwater supply is able to produce enough to keep up with day use picnicking and camping demand.
On hot summer days, grab a swimsuit and towel and come enjoy a dip in the park's swimming pool open on weekends, beginning on Memorial Day weekend through mid-June, then daily through Labor Day, from 12- 6 p.m. There is an additional fee for the use of the swimming pool, to be paid at the park entrance.
The large picnic grounds are located in the day use area, and are even available for group events and getaways. A covered area for group use contains picnic tables, a sink and an electrical outlet with a horseshoe pit and wheelchair-accessible restroom nearby.
Whether you visit the back country on a several hour hike or take a mere stroll along the creekbed, you will enjoy a close-up look at all the natural beauty that the park has to offer. There are well over 10 miles of trail for your indulgence.
Location - Directions
The park is located 5 miles north of St. Helena and 4 miles south of Calistoga on Highway 29/128.
Latitude/Longitude: 38.5376 / -122.5788
South - Near the Coast
Take Highway 101 north to Highway 37 at Novato, east on Highway 37 to Highway 121, north on Highway 121 to Highway 29 near Napa, north on Highway 29 to the park entrance.
South - Inland
Take I5 north to I580, west on I580 to I680, north to I780, north to I80, east to Highway 37, west to Highway 29, north on Highway 29 to the park entrance.
North - Near the Coast
Take Highway 101 south to Calistoga exit, go east on Mark West Rd., continuing on Porter Creek Rd. to Petrified Forest Rd., turn left, go to Highway 128, turn right and follow Highway 128 past Calistoga to the park entrance.
Take I5 south to Highway 20, west to Highway 53, south to Highway 29 at Lower Lake, then south on Highway 29 to the park entrance.
Take I80 west to Highway 12, west to Highway 29, then north to the park entrance.
Seasons/Climate Recommended Clothing
The park exhibits more seasonal changes than most Californians experience. Hot, dry summers change to mild, wet winters; in between, in spring and fall, the park and its surrounding area are probably at their finest.
Summer temperatures may reach 105 degrees Fahrenheit, but nights are usually cool. In the fall, when daytime temperatures are more pleasant, the leaves begin to turn, creating a dramatic and colorful display.
Temperatures don't often go below freezing and snow is infrequent, but nearly 45 inches of rain are apt to fall during a single winter - between December and March.
More about the park
Most of the park is rugged, with elevations ranging from 300 to 2,000 feet. You will notice a pattern in the vegetation: the forests are on the north-facing slopes and in canyons, while south-facing slopes tend to be brushy; redwoods grow only near creeks or springs.
Plant life hides much of the park's geology, which is principally volcanic, but you can see a reminder of the area's violent geologic past in the volcanic ash cliffs of upper Ritchey Canyon.
The park is home to raccoons, gray squirrels, deer, foxes, bobcats, and coyotes to name a few, but they are sometimes difficult to spot because of their nocturnal habits and the heavy forest cover.
Dogs are restricted to the camp and picnic areas and must be leashed. They are not permitted on the trails or in the pool area. Dogs may not be left unattended and must be inside a vehicle or tent at night.
Several species of birds can be easily detected though, including the six kinds of woodpecker that inhabit the park. The spectacular crow-sized pileated woodpecker is one of them. On a more rare occasion a spotted owl can be found, perched high in a redwood tree.
Located by the entrance to the park is the Visitor Center. The Visitor Center and entrance station are open intermittently when staffing is available. Brochures (hiking maps) are also available by mail.
Next to the park's visitor center is the Native American Garden which displays some of the plants important to the first people of this area. Today, many of the same plants are used by the Wappo people. A guide for the garden is available by mail or in the visitor center to broaden one's understanding of the first people.
Near the day use/picnic area is the Pioneer Cemetery, resting-place of some of the original settlers of the Napa Valley. The cemetery is an interesting place to visit while on a day hike, and is currently under restoration to return it to its original, mid-1800's appearance.
Interpretive programs are offered throughout the year. Special programs can sometimes be arranged for groups by calling the park in advance.