San Bernardino National Forest

Barton Flats Visitor Center

The Barton Flats Visitor Center is the center of activities for the campgrounds in the area. Informal programs are presented with display animals from the San Bernardino County Museum. The Barton Flats area is home to over 20 organizational camps that attract up to 30,000 campers every year. San Gorgonio Wilderness Association (SGWA) members develop and present interpretive programs for over a thousand children each year. Nature walks and interpretive programs are also presented to campers from the four area family campgrounds on summer weekends. One of the most popular programs for the last three years has been an informal astronomy presentation, giving campers a chance to peek at the heavens without the city pollution.

In the late 1970's, the Forest Service closed the Barton Flats Visitor Center. In 1986, the Defenders reopened the Visitor Center, and a year later the SGWA took over the responsibility of caring for the Center and its visitors -- which continues to this day. The Center is totally staffed by volunteers and serves up to 10,000 visitors each summer.

Be sure to come by and visit the annual Forest Festival held in mid-August. Smokey Bear provides a warm welcome to up to 1000 visitors. This is a day for the public to get a taste of the Forest. Volunteers provide camping and fishing tips, puppet shows, and crafts. One of the most popular activities involves helping youngsters use a crosscut saw to create a 'tree cookie' that is then branded with both a Forest Service and Smokey logo.

The Barton Flats Visitor Center is staffed and operated by the San Gorgonio Wilderness Association.

We are located on State Highway 38, 7 miles east of Angelus Oaks, nestled above the Santa Ana River and below the San Gorgonio Wilderness.

Hours are 8:00am to 4:30pm Thursday through Sunday (Closed Monday - Wednesday) Visitor Center will be open until October 1.

The Barton Flats Visitor Center provides the following services to the public:

Adventure Passes

San Gorgonio Wilderness Permits

Trail Conditions

All other Permits are available at the San Gorgonio Ranger Station only.



Forest related gift items

Information on Volunteering on the National Forest


Directions from Mill Creek Ranger Station: Barton Flats Visitor Center is located a quarter mile from Barton Flats Campground on Highway 38.