Palomar Mountain

State Park - California

Palomar Mountain is a mountain ridge in the Peninsular Ranges in northern San Diego County. It is famous as the location of the Palomar Observatory and Hale Telescope, and known for the Palomar Mountain State Park.



Vintage 1947 USGS 1:250000 Map of Santa Ana in California. Published by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).Vintage USGS - Santa Ana - 1947

Vintage 1947 USGS 1:250000 Map of Santa Ana in California. Published by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Palomar Mountain is a mountain ridge in the Peninsular Ranges in northern San Diego County. It is famous as the location of the Palomar Observatory and Hale Telescope, and known for the Palomar Mountain State Park.
Palomar Mountain State Park Our Mission The mission of California State Parks is to provide for the health, inspiration and education of the people of California by helping to preserve the state’s extraordinary biological diversity, protecting its most valued natural and cultural resources, and creating opportunities for high-quality outdoor recreation. Enjoy a commanding view of scenic vistas from Palomar Mountain State Park’s Boucher Hill, or hike along forestcovered ridges, valleys, California State Parks supports equal access. Prior to arrival, visitors with disabilities who need assistance should contact the park at (760) 742-3462. If you need this publication in an alternate format, contact CALIFORNIA STATE PARKS P.O. Box 942896 Sacramento, CA 94296-0001 For information call: (800) 777-0369. (916) 653-6995, outside the U.S. 711, TTY relay service Discover the many states of California.™ Palomar Mountain State Park 19952 State Park Road Palomar, CA 92060 (760) 742-3462 © 2015 California State Parks and grassy meadows. P alomar Mountain State Park features 1,862 acres of pristine forest, peaceful meadows, and pleasing panoramas of northern San Diego County. Visitors can camp, hike, fish, picnic, and relax in nature. In summer, temperatures average a balmy 80 degrees. Winters bring snow to the park, with freezing temperatures that can dip below 30 degrees. Spring and autumn are moderate. PARK HISTORY Native People Over millennia, what is now called Palomar Mountain was used by many local native groups  — likely the Cupeño, Ipai, and Serrano people. However, the mountain stands in traditional Luiseño territory. They maintained seasonal villages on the mountain, where they hunted game and gathered acorns and other seed crops. The Pechanga Luiseño called the mountain Pa’áaw (pah-OW), and the area of Pauma Luiseño summer encampments (now within the park’s boundaries) was known as Wavimai. The Luiseño people named the village site at Cedar Grove Pee-nav-angña and what is now Doane Valley was called O-us-koon, meaning “wild lilac.” Luiseño grinding rock Boucher Hill Fire Lookout Tower honor and restore their ancient languages and culture. The United States gained control of California in 1848. Palomar Mountain remained a wild place for many years. The mountain was sparsely populated with native people and some homesteaders. Settlers, such as George Edwin Doane — for whom Doane Valley is named — raised livestock, grew hay, and planted apple orchards. Some of these apple trees still bear fruit today. Palomar Mountain State Park was created in 1933 during the Great Depression. Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) members  — young men employed by the federal government to help lower unemployment — built many of the roads, trails and picnic facilities still used in the park today. Colonization Spanish colonists established Mission San Luis Rey in 1798, in what is now Oceanside. The missionaries called the blue mountain range “Sierra de Palomar.” Native Californians from the surrounding area, renamed Luiseño after Mission San Luis Rey, were brought to the mission to work. An unfamiliar diet and epidemic diseases carried by Spanish émigrés killed great numbers of native people. Mexico won independence NATHANIEL HARRISON from Spain in 1821. Through the 1833 Secularization Act, In the 1880s, “Nate” Harrison, a former slave who came former mission lands were to be to California during the distributed among the surviving Gold Rush, made remote native people who had labored Palomar Mountain his at the missions. Instead, large home. Harrison grew hay tracts (ranchos) were granted to and raised hogs near the Mexican citizens. Native people eastern edge of today’s park. either attempted to return to He died in 1920, reportedly their homes or worked on the living to the age of 101. The ranchos. Many were forcibly park’s Nate Harrison Grade moved to the Temecula Valley. Road is named for him. Today’s Luiseño people work to overlooks the Pauma Valley. The first fire lookout tower here was erected in 1935, and this restored tower was built in 1948. The Boucher Hill Fire Lookout Tower is available for guided tours when volunteers are available, unless fire-spotting is needed. Boucher Hill also features a nearby accessible view deck with a panorama of the Pauma Valley below. Fishing at Doane Pond NATURAL HISTORY Palomar Mountain’s average 5,000-foot elevation features mixed conifer forest and meadows, uncommon in Southern California. On the trails wending through the 450acre Doane Valley Natural Preserve, hikers pass white fir, incense cedar and big-cone Douglas-fir trees that provide ample shade. Flowering trees and shrubs in meadowlands and streamside riparian areas blanket the mountain with color each spring. Western dogwoods, azaleas, and lilies blossom, while lupine and penstemon poke through native meadow grasses. Such bird species as western
Wel ! come Palomar Mountain State Park 19952 State Park Rd.• Palomar Mountain, CA 92060 • (760) 742-3462 California State Parks has established rules and regulations to protect park areas for the enjoyment of future generations as well as for the convenience and safety of park visitors. To ensure your visit is a pleasant one, please observe the following: Natural resources, plants and animal life are the principal attractions of most state parks. They are an integral part of the ecosystem and the natural community. As such they are protected by federal, state and park laws. Disturbance or destruction of these resources is strictly forbidden. Loaded firearms, air rifles and hunting are not allowed in the park. Dead and down wood is part of the natural environment. Decayed vegetation forms humus and assists the growth of trees and other plants. For this reason the gathering of down wood is prohibited. Fuel is sold in the park for your convenience. (When considered a hazard, down wood is removed by park personnel.) Fires are permitted only in facilities provided for this purpose. This is necessary to prevent disastrous forest fires. Portable stoves may be used in designated areas. It is the responsibility of every visitor to use extreme caution with any burning materials, including tobacco. All fireworks are prohibited. Dogs and other domestic animals are not permitted to run at large in state parks. Dogs or cats must be in tents or vehicles during nighttime hours. Dogs must be controlled on a leash no longer than six feet at all times, and they are prohibited on all trails and beaches except in designated areas. Loud noises are prohibited at all times, especially between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. Engine-driven electric generators, which can disturb others, may be operated only between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. All vehicle travel must be confined to designated roads or areas. The speed limit for all vehicles is 15 mph. All vehicles and all drivers must be licensed. Parking is permitted only in designated areas. Blocking parking spaces is prohibited. Campsite use must be paid for in advance. To hold a campsite you must reserve it or occupy it. To prevent encroachment on others, the occupant limit of each campsite is eight people. Checkout time is noon. In order to accommodate the greatest number of visitors possible, the camping limit in any one campground is 30 days per calendar year. Refuse, including garbage, cigarettes, paper, boxes, bottles, ashes and other rubbish, shall be placed only in designated receptacles. Your pleasure and pride will be enhanced when you keep your park clean. Please clean up after yourself so that others may enjoy the beauty of this park. Palomar Mountain State Park 22 21 Do an 24 tur Na y e all eV Accessible Feature 20 ra il we Lo LEGEND 23 rail eT n oa rD eT C ek re Campfire Center 25 Parking 19 e an Do Locked Gate 27 18 26 16 Restrooms 17 Showers Trail 28 15 Doane Valley Campground 30 6 7 1 8 Camp Host Do © 2006 California State Parks ane Valle y 13 12 10 9 4 2 Map not to scale 11 29 5 3 14 il Nature Tra 31
Doane Valley Nature Trail Palomar Mountain State Park Photo courtesy of Harry Schrader Doane Valley Nature Trail Palomar Mountain State Park Welcome to the Doane Valley Nature Trail at Palomar Mountain State Park. This easy 1-mile trail offers you an opportunity to relax and enjoy one of California’s finest natural outdoor areas. This guide will help you make the most of your walk, with information about some of the plants and natural features you will see along the trail. The Doane Valley Nature Trail is a great place to see the wide variety of plants that grow in this region and to learn about their characteristics, their habitats, and the many ways they have been used by people over time. Most of the trail is an easy walk. However, there are two stream crossings and a few steep areas. Remember to be safe, and leave any plants or animals you see for the next person to enjoy. n Fre ch Va l le W Doa Rattlesnake Cree k ei r y Tr a Doane Valley Campground il Valle y Nature T ne r ail a Tr il Do 2000 e an 0 Cr FEET ee k LEGEND Doane Pond Parking Road Restroom Trail 1 Stinging Nettle (Urtica holosericea) Beware of the painful sting of this plant growing along the creek and in other moist areas. The hairs along the stems contain a chemical similar to that of red ants. If your skin brushes against these hairs, you will be injected with the chemical, which stings for a few minutes. It’s not all bad though; Native Americans used the leaves as a vegetable and the fibers for thread. Poison oak is another plant to beware of, though there are only a few of these plants along this trail. Remember: “leaves of three, beware of me.” 2 Wild Rose (Rosa californica) This shrub-like plant is easy to identify by the small sharp spines, alternating leaves, and, in spring and summer, simple, fragrant rose-pink flowers. The rose will grow anywhere there is enough moisture. Native Americans had many uses for the plant, both medicinal and religious. 3 Doane Creek (pronounced “doe-n”) This clear water from several springs flows through Doane Pond, then joins French Creek to form Pauma Creek in Lower Doane Valley. Eventually Pauma Creek flows into the San Luis Rey River, which meets the sea in Oceanside. 4 Serviceberry (Amelanchier utahensis) This slender-stemmed shrub has clusters of white flowers in early spring. The edible blue-black berries mature in late July or early August and are eaten by wildlife. Native Americans used the boiled inner green bark as an eyewash and the wood for arrow shafts. 5 Life in a Log What are those squiggly lines on the log? This log bears the scars of a bark beetle infestation. Bark beetles, the size of a grain of rice, bore under a tree’s bark to lay their eggs. When the larvae hatch, they chew their way through the living tissue of the tree. As they grow, their trails get wider until they leave the tree as an adult. If a tree is unable to produce enough sap to defend itself, it will succumb to millions of these tiny insects. 6 Thimbleberry (Rubus parviflorus) A member of the rose family, the thimbleberry is closely related to the western raspberry and the California blackberry. The plant’s mature fruit and very large leaves are a source of food for wildlife. 7 White Fir (Abies concolor) The trees ahead of you are called white fir, possibly because of the light color of their bark. This is the most widespread of the western firs—the seedlings will grow in almost any kind of soil. The trees grow rapidly for 50 - 100 years, then the growth rate slows for the rest of their lifespan, which can be up to 350 years. 8 Landslide! During the winter of 1992-93, Palomar Mountain received approximately 80 inches of rain. The tremendous amount of rainfall resulted in the landslide you see above. In the time since, the plants are returning, and eventually the area will look much as it did. This is a classic example of the cyclical nature of life—as things die or are destroyed, they are soon replaced by new forms of life. 9 Western Burning Bush (Eunonymus occidentalis var. parishii) In southern California this bush with the large, smooth leaves is found only in the high mountains. The plant’s name is derived from its red-orange seeds that dangle from the branches. In late spring, you may recognize the columbine (Aquilega formosa var. hypolasia) by its unique flower. Each of the short petals ends in a spur that contains nectar and turns orange in early summer. 10 Berry Alley Surrounding you on either side of the trail is a variety of berry bushes. See if you can find the delicate pink blossoms of mountain currant. These will mature into a blueblack berry that is good fresh or dried. Also, look for a prickly vine growing all throughout the other plants. This is western raspberry. Low to the ground, you can find wild strawberry. All these berries are much-loved by wildlife and help provide the nutrition they need to survive the winter. Mountain Currant Wild Strawberry We

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