Hike, Camp and Swim at Bothe-Napa Valley State Park


Ritchey Creek, photo by Kim Malko (kimmalco.com)

Bothe-Napa Valley State Park, conveniently located off of Highway 29 between Calistoga and St. Helena, is a great place for hiking, picnicking and camping. The nearly 2,000 acre park has excellent trails along Ritchey Creek and through beautiful redwood groves. It offers 50 camping areas either near redwoods along the creekside, or among the oaks and manzanita on sunny slopes above the creek. Ritchey Canyon Trail runs along Ritchey Creek for 3.9 miles before ending near an old Homestead Site. The trail is level and winds through an abundance of maples and oaks. It is an easy and relaxing hike. History Trail, 1.2 miles one way, cuts south from the park to Bale Grist Mill State Historic Site. The 36-foot wooden water wheel and millstones are operational. For a bit more of a challenge, Coyote Peak, with an elevation of 1170 feet, offers views of the valley and can be accessed from the Coyote Peak Trail. A few loop hikes are possible, and Redwood Trail, which ambles along the creek, plays a part in most of them. Lat/Long: 38.5376 / -122.5788. Bothe-Napa is currently being operated by the Napa County Regional Park and Open Space District. Day use fees are $8.00 per car. Camping is $35, $8 for a second car. There is one hike-n-bike site for en-route travelers at $3.00 per person, 2 nights max stay. There are also three yurts available at $60-$75 per  night (yurts include queen size bed) .