Stanislaus National Forest

Quick Facts

Stanislaus National Forest


(209) 532-3671

Map Directions

Things To Do


The Stanislaus National Forest (Forest) encompasses 898,099 acres on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada; California's snow capped mountain range that flanks the Great Central Valley. Located between Lake Tahoe and Yosemite, the Forest landscape is a continuum of natural and scenic beauty that defines the Sierra. Amid soaring crests, sparkling mountain lakes, towering forests, and canyons carved by cool rushing rivers, visitors discover connections with nature and the spirit of the Sierra Nevada. A mere two hour drive from the Great Central Valley and three hours from the San Francisco Bay Area, makes the Forest a very popular destination place. A cherished and accessible overnight destination, the Forest offers a full range of year-round recreation opportunities. The network of trans-Sierra highways, forest roads and trails encourages discovery of nature and history, creating family traditions and lifetime memories.

Visitors to the Forest can recreate in over 800 miles of rivers and streams, enjoy a comfortable cabin, stay in a campground, or hike into the backcountry seeking pristine solitude. Also, visitors can swim near a sandy beach or wade into cold clear streams cooling the feet while lost in the beauty of nature, raft the exciting and breath-taking Tuolumne River, or canoe one of the many gorgeous lakes. Mountain biking and snowmobiling are also popular . Opportunities abound for visitors to expand their understanding of the natural world and to strengthen their connection to the land, now and for the future.

Map of Stanislaus Nat'l Forest

Latitude, Longitude: 38.249303, -119.997568



  • Boating

    Both motorized and non-motorized boating is allowed in the Forest. Swimming, rafting and canoeing are also popular activities in the Forest.

  • Bicycling

    Mountain biking is allowed on the trails on the Highway 4 corridor.

  • Auto/Motorcycle

    Touring opportunities are available.

  • Camping

    Camping is available in developed campgrounds with facilities such as toilets and power hook-ups, as well as remote and dispersed camping.

  • Climbing

    Opportunities are available.

  • Fishing

    There are numerous places to fish on one of Stanislaus's beautiful lakes, streams, rivers and ponds.

  • Hiking

    Stanislaus offers visitors many places to enjoy a relaxing day hike or a more challenging backpacking trip through remote areas.

  • Historic Sites

    Touring activities are available.

  • Horseback Riding

    The Forest offers opportunities for visitors to enjoy horseback riding on trails and in camping areas.

  • Hunting

    Hunting is allowed in Stanislaus National Forest.

  • Off Highway Vehicles

    OHV use is allowed in designated areas and camping sites. The Crandall OHV Area has 40 miles of signed trails and 140 miles of road open to OHV use extending from north of Crandall Peak to the Deer Creek area northwest of Highway 108. The riding area ranges in elevation of 3500 feet at Deer Creek to 5500 feet at Crandall Peak. Four-wheel drive and ATV trails are limited, but use is allowed on the 140 miles of road. A camping area located at Crandall Peak near Spring Gap off Forest Roads 4N01 and 4N88, accesses these routes and offers dispersed camping and vehicle parking/off loading with restrooms, but no other services or potable water is available. Trails in the Crandall Peak area are usually closed in the winter due to snow blocking access. Four-wheel drive and ATV trails are limited in the riding area, but use is allowed on the 140 miles of road.

  • Picnicking

    The Forest has many places for picknicking includin day-use and group sites.

  • Winter Sports

    Popular winter sports in the area include skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling.


The park is open year-round with some seasonal closures due to winter weather.



From Sonora, the forest can be reached via state highway 120. From Merced, state highway 140 will lead you to the southern end of the forest.


Located three-hours from the San Francisco Bay area.

Phone Numbers


(209) 532-3671