Basic Information

1 Indian Well HQ
Tulelake , CA 96134

Lava Beds is a truly remote park, in a corner of California most people never visit. Most roads into this area wind through mountains, and along rivers, and travel may take longer than expected. Services are few and far between and winter driving conditions can be encountered anytime between fall and spring.

Lava Beds Visitor Center Hours

While you can visit the park 24 hours a day, the visitor center in December, January and February is only open from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm. March, April, May and September, October, and November, the visitor center is open from 9:00 am - 4:30 pm. June, July, and August the visitor center is open 9:00 am - 5:30 pm.

Standard Hours

  • Sunday: -
  • Monday: -
  • Tuesday: -
  • Wednesday: -
  • Thursday: -
  • Friday: -
  • Saturday: -

Additional Information

Park elevations range from 4,000 to 5,700 feet. Cold weather is possible any time of year, and snow has been recorded in all months. Winter day­time highs average 40°F; lows average 20°F. Morning fog is frequent from autumn through spring. Summer daytime highs average 75° to 80°F; lows average 50°F. Occasional thunderstorms occur in summer.

Entrance Fees:

Lava Beds Entrance Fee - $15.00

The entrance fee is good for 7 days and can be paid for with cash, check, or credit card. Entrance fee is per vehicle.

Entrance Passes:

Lava Beds & Crater Lake Annual Pass - $30.00

The annual pass is good for one year at both Lava Beds and Crater Lake.

Lava Beds Visitor Center

Lava Beds is home to one visitor center located at the south end of the park, near cave loop road. An entrance station is located at the north end of the park, but is only open in the summer. As you drive through the park you can find information kiosks with park maps at Petroglyph Point, and Gillem's Camp.

 
Storms from the VC
Distant storms skirt the monument, as seen from the visitor center.

NPS, Alison Bender

 

Getting Around

Travel through the park is by private vehicle, or commercial tour, there is no public transportation in the park. All roads in the park, even the unpaved Medicine Lake Road, accommodate standard passenger vehicles, with pull outs suitable for large recreation vehicles. Snow can temporarily close roads, but the main paved park road and the park is kept open all year. The Medicine Lake Road to Hwy 89 and Forest Service Road 10, south-east of the park to Forest Service Road 97, can all become closed due to snow, and are not plowed.

Be Prepared

  • For changing weather conditions above ground, and cool cave temperatures below ground.
  • For wildlife - be aware of wildlife crossing the road, use pullouts to watch wildlife and do not feed or approach wildlife.
  • For limited cell phone service - throughout the park you should expect limited service, but might get service at the visitor center. You can also get WiFi at the visitor center.
  • Pets are not allowed on trails, in caves, or in the visitor center.

 

Visitor Center & Information

Lava Beds is home to one visitor center located at the south end of the park, near cave loop road. An entrance station is located at the north end of the park, but is only open in the summer. As you drive through the park you can find information kiosks with park maps at Petroglyph Point, and Gillem's Camp.

Goods & Services

The Lava Beds Natural History Association bookstore in the Visitor Center provides snack food, ice, flashlights both for loan and purchase, helmets, batteries, books, and an assortment of souvenirs. No gas, restaurants, or showers are available in the park, but can be found in the nearby communities of Tionesta, CA; Tulelake, CA; and Merrill, OR (20-30 minutes from the Visitor Center area).

Staying

Lava Beds has one campground with 40+ sites, that are filled on a first-come-first-served basis. One group site is available to groups of 15-40 people.

 

Guided Programs and Activities

Ranger guided programs are offered daily during the summer months. Check back to see a list of program offered weekly during the summer season.

Last updated: August 7, 2016

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 1240
Tulelake, CA 96134

Phone:

(530) 667-8113

Contact Us