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Mt. Madonna County Park

Published on: 11/17/2014 10:51 AM
Park Info

Plan Your Trip to Mt. Madonna


  • Blackhawk Trail

    The Blackhawk Trail from Contour to Ridge Trail is closed permanently to all users due to erosion. Call (408) 842-2341 for more information.

Hours of Operation

Open year round
8:00 AM – Sunset


Make a Reservation


Contact Info

Mt. Madonna
7850 Pole Line Rd
Watsonville, CA 95076

(408) 842-2341

Senior Park Ranger :
John Heenan 408.335.3293

Senior Park Maintenance Worker : Jason Ebling 408.314.5186

horseback trail rideMt. Madonna Stables offers horseback trail rides, it is a wonderful way to explore the beauty of this park.

Welcome to Mt. Madonna County Park, one of the most majestic of Santa Clara County's regional park and recreation areas. This 3,688 acre park is dominated by the redwood forest so characteristic of the Santa Cruz Mountain range. To the east, the park overlooks the Santa Clara Valley, to the west, Monterey Bay. As the slopes of Mt. Madonna descend toward the valley, the landscape changes from redwood forest to oak woodland, dense chaparral and grassy meadows. Park visitors may learn about areas where Ohlone Indians hunted and harvested, and will understand why cattle baron Henry Miller spent his summers here. Enjoy your visit today, and return often to the pristine redwood forest of Mt. Madonna County Park. Mt Madonna Stables offers horseback trail rides, it is a wonderful way to explore the beauty of this park.

The park is located on Highway 152 (Hecker Pass Highway), ten miles west of Gilroy. From the east, use Highway 101, and take the Highway 152 West exit. From the west, use Highway 1, and take the Highway 152 East exit. The entrance to the park is located at the summit of Highway 152 at Pole Line Road.


Visitors may choose from 118 drive-in and walk-in reservable campsites spread throughout four campgrounds. Each site comes equipped with a barbecue pit, food locker and picnic table. Showers are also available (no coins needed) with a day use or camping fee required, as well as 17 partial hook-up RV sites. Yurts are also available for reservation. These domed-tent like structures come in three different sizes - 16', 20' and 24' offering bunk beds with mattresses, fold out futons and a wrap-around deck. Hikers and equestrians have access to an extensive 14 mile trail system. Mt Madonna Stables offers horseback trail rides, it is a wonderful way to explore the beauty of this park. Shaded picnic areas are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Group picnic, group camping and youth camping areas are available by reservation. Bowmen may practice archery skills at the beautiful archery range. A one mile self-guided nature trail winds around the ruins of cattle baron Henry Miller's summer home. The park's amphitheater, available by reservation for weddings and other special functions, also features live music and slide shows Memorial Day through Labor Day. These free shows are provided by park docents every Saturday at 7:30 p.m. The park also features a visitor center where the natural history, geology and cultural history of the park is highlighted.


Overnight camping is one of the most popular activities at Mt. Madonna. Please help make this unique back-to-nature experience worthwhile for everyone by adhering to the following rules and any posted regulations:

  • Camp at established campsites.
  • All campsites are site specific and reservations are required. To make a reservation you can reserve up to 6 months to the date or at the least, and no less than, 48 hours prior to the arrival date. Maximum of 8 persons and 2 vehicles per site.  Make your reservations at or call (408) 355-2201 from 8:30a.m. to 3:30p.m. Monday - Friday.
  • Camping length of stay limit:
    Memorial Day through Labor Day - 14 days maximum
    Remainder of year - 14 days within a 30 day period
  • Persons under age 18 cannot camp overnight unless accompanied by a responsible adult.
  • Maximum of two pets per campsite. Keep pets on a 6-foot (or less) leash during the day, and in confined areas overnight.
  • No wood gathering. Wood may be purchased at the entry station kiosk.
  • Park closes to non-campers one-half hour after sunset to one half hour before sunrise.
  • Quiet hours: 10 p.m. to 7 a.m. No radios, musical instruments, or other loud noises during quiet hours.
  • Maximum stay is 14 days within a 45-day period.


  • Mt. Madonna has 17 partial hook-up sites with electricity and water. Make your reservations at or call (408)355-2201 from 8:30a.m. to 3:30p.m. Monday-Friday.
  • On site dump station available. (Located on Valley View Road).

Hours and Fees

The park is open year-round from 8 a.m. until sunset. All non-campers must leave the park one half hour after sunset. Vehicle entry fees are collected year-round. Fees are required for camping, and for use of group picnic and group camping areas. Fees are posted at the kiosk and at the ranger station.


In compliance with the requirements of Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 ('ADA'),the Santa Clara County Parks and Recreation Department will not discriminate against qualified individuals with disabilities on the basis of disability in its programs, services, or activities. The Department will make reasonable modifications to policies and programs to ensure that people with disability have an equal opportunity to enjoy our programs, services, facilities, and activities. If you need assistance with an ADA request, please contact our ADA Coordinator.​​​​

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