santa fe dam


Highway 101 Road Trip Through California in Los Angeles


The bicyclists atop a steep hill are riding in the park at Santa Fe Dam. Seen from the 605 Freeway near the 210, the dam is a fantastic recreation area to stop by and have a picnic when you are taking longer road journeys. Ideal for large events, the facility has huge grounds and plenty of space to host a variety of corporate and family picnics and events.


Santa Fe Park is located at 15501 E Arrow Hwy
Irwindale, CA 91706


It is operated by LA County Parks and charges an admission fee which at one time was around $6 per car. The park's website doesn't show the fee. 

Santa Fe Dam Recreational Area opened in 1978 in joint cooperation with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The facility houses a Nature Center staffed with volunteers. Santa Fe Dam offers fishing, boating, camping, picnicking and bicycling. During the summer months swimming and an enclosed Water Play Area, which opened in 1997 are also included.

Park Hours: Open from sunrise to sunset; closed Christmas Day
Summer Hours: 6:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Activities and events include:

Day camping
Mountain Biking
Quiet Boating
Boat Launch Area
Group Picnic Rentals from 1 to 500
Nature Center
Nature Trails
Snack Bar
Swim Beach
Water Play Area
Wheel Fun Rentals (Cycle and Rowboat Rentals)

Though located in the middle of an industrial section, city sounds fade away while at this 836-acre recreational area that has a mountainous backdrop. The nature center trail, at the northern end of the park, has a rock-lined, three-quarter-mile looping trail that is paved, level and a delight to walk. Desert is the predominant theme here, so you'll observe an abundance of cacti and other plant life, and animals such as jackrabbits, lizards, roadrunners and hummingbirds.

The 70-acre lake near the entrance offers a small beach and a swimming area with lifeguards that is open in the summer. You can fish and go boating on the lake. The lake is stocked with bass, trout and catfish. A tackle and bait shop is located in the park. Electric boats, rowboats and paddleboats are available for rent; no gasoline-powered boats are allowed. Other attractions in the park include a playground, picnic facilities under shade trees and unpaved walking trails. Campsites are available for youth groups.