If you’re a local of California or an out-of-town visitor who enjoys the great-outdoors, you will enjoy spending time at Border Field State Park. Just like its name states, this Californian park is located a short walk from the US/Mexican border, about 15 miles south of San Diego. Nature lovers can drink in beautiful wildlife as they hike, bird watch, comb the beaches, or participate in surf fishing.
Border Field State Park is open to the public, but the entrance gate is currently closed to any vehicles. In the past, vehicles were allowed entrance on weekends and holidays only. However, at this time, the park is only accessibly by foot or by horseback. For those who enjoy horseback riding and would like to see this natural reserve a bit higher than usual, there are staging areas near the parking lots and horse corrals for public use.
Though there is water, swimming and wading are not advised for visitors. Border Field State Park does not provide lifeguarding services and does not recommend getting in the water because of rip currents an inshore holes. If you’re planning on visiting this park, plan on staying dry and saving your swimming for another place and time.
When you grow tired or hungry and are in need of a rest, this park has several restrooms, picnic areas, and barbecues where you can put your feet up and fill your stomach after a long family hike. Because of spending cuts, there is currently no trash pick up at the park, so the park would asks visitors to leave a clean area behind.
For dog-lovers, Border Field State Park is unfortunately not open to these animals or any other pets. Previously, dogs were only allowed at the Monument Mesa Picnic area. However, because this area is only accessible by car, dogs are not able to enter at this time.
Border Field State Park lies inside of the Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve, therefore lending itself as a natural habit and refuge for many endangered species, other wildlife, and an outstanding array of beautiful plants. State and Federal law prohibits and disturbance of the plants or animals, including any collection of rocks, shells, wood, or plants. Generally, when walking through the park, there should be no touching and no collection of anything found. Be an honest park-walker and keep the natural reserve looking it’s best.
Finally, for history lovers, there are some monuments nearby that can be seen. The Border Monument at Friendship Circle is still open but with increased regulations. The Imperial Beach Border Patrol Station is currently allowing visitors, but only during the weekend between 10 am and 2 pm. The Border Monument is open to anyone, but a 25 person limit is in place for Friendship Circle and a government issued photo I.D. is required for entrance.
For directions and other information concerning Border Field State Park, please visit http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=664. Current daily hours of the park are 9:30 am to 5:00 pm. Vehicle access, when allowed, costs $5 per car. The park asks that visitors call 619-575-3613 before coming to be updated with new safety procedures, rules and regulations, and hours. If you’re planning on bringing a car, please visit http://www.trnerr.org/border_field.html to determine the current status of the road as well as current status of the entrance gate and parking information.