• Big-berry manzanita and the skyline of the high peaks greet visitors who explore the steep and narrow portion of the High Peaks trail. NPS Photo|Sierra Willoughby

    Pinnacles

    National Park California

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  • Fee Free Days in Celebration of National Parks Week

    On Saturday April 19 and Sunday April 20, All National Parks including Pinnacles will waive entrance fees. In addition, Western National Park Association Sales in visitor centers of the park will be discounted by 15%

Environmental Factors

An image of green grass and rock formations.

A view from the High Peaks in winter.

Photo by Glen Tao.

Geologic forces have created the landscape of Pinnacles, but a climate of hot dry summers and winter rains has also shaped the terrain. The vegetation of the park transforms each year as the rain stops and temperatures climb; hillsides go from vibrant green to golden brown within days. Many of the chaparral plants thrive when fires burn through to make room for new growth. Streams that are dry throughout the summer can flood during the winter and spring rains.

Non-native species and development have also had an impact on the Park. Exotic species of both plants and animals have threatened the native vegetation and wildlife. Roads and trails have created erosion and affected sensitive riparian areas. Park managers are working to limit the damage caused by these factors.

Did You Know?

Pinnacles bee photo by Keir Morse

Pinnacles National Park has the greatest number of bee species per unit area of any place ever studied. The roughly 400 bee species are mostly solitary; they don't live in hives.