Elfin Forest
Recreational Reserve

Mission Statement: Olivenhain Municipal Water District is devoted to the safe operation of the Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve and to providing all visitors with a unique recreational, educational, and environmental experience.

One of San Diego County’s most precious natural resources, Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve offers approximately 11 miles of hiking, mountain biking, and equestrian trails, as well as picnic areas and scenic mountain viewing points. In addition, the natural beauty of the Reserve includes such native plant communities as oak riparian, oak woodland, coastal sage scrub, and chaparral. All wildlife and natural resources at the Reserve are fully protected so that future generations may also enjoy these wonders.

The 784-acre Reserve was developed by OMWD in partnership with the San Diego County Water Authority and the U.S. Department of the Interior – Bureau of Land Management, as an element of the Olivenhain Water Storage Project and the Authority’s Emergency Storage Project. The Reserve first opened in 1992. Owned by the Authority and managed by OMWD, the Reserve has been designed to unify the interests of domestic water supply development, natural resources management, and recreational opportunities.


Park Hours

Open every day except December 25; closed on rainy days or during a red flag warning (high risk of fire); Park opens at 8:00 a.m.; Park closes approximately 30 minutes prior to sunset; actual times are posted at trailhead

Interpretive Center Hours

(Subject to docent availability)

March 25, 2017

  • 12:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Today’s Weather

overcast clouds
humidity: 87%
wind: 5mph W
H 61 • L 55

Upcoming Events

Join us on Saturday, April 22, from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at the Reserve to help celebrate Earth Day […]

OMWD’s Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve is always looking for new docents to share their love of the outdoors and help […]

Join writer and artist Donna Walker on the second Sunday of each month at 10:00 a.m. for a free interpretive […]

Explore the world of insects with Reserve docent Bill Burkhardt. Bill’s monthly presentations include an amazing slideshow, microscope viewing, and answers […]

Facebook Feed

Thank you all for your patience during the recent EFRR closures as a result of record-setting rainfall. Rangers worked very hard to address all major erosion, drainage, and access issues, making EFRR trails safe for all users. ... See MoreSee Less

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We appreciate your patience as we worked diligently over the last several days to recover from the heavy rains on February 27. We're happy to report that safe conditions have been restored throughout EFRR and we will re-open on Thursday, March 9. ... See MoreSee Less

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As the Way Up Trail, main entrance to the reserve, is still obstructed, the reserve will remain temporarily closed. Please call 760-632-4212 for status updates. ... See MoreSee Less

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Rangers anticipate keeping EFRR closed through Tuesday as we ensure trail safety for all EFRR users - human, canine, and equine. We tentatively plan to re-open on Wednesday. Please call 760-632-4212 for status updates. ... See MoreSee Less

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Jennifer Bishop, Joseph Ochaba and four others like this.

Christopher SlivaChristopher Sliva What a joke.....3 weeks ago

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Due to the heavy precipitation culminating with the storm event on February 27, EFRR will remain closed through Monday, March 6, while rangers continue to repair trails. Thank you for your cooperation during this temporary closure. The reserve will reopen as soon as safe trail conditions can be restored. Please call 760-632-4212 for status updates. ... See MoreSee Less

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Nona Barker, John Wright and nine others like this.

Due DiligenceDue Diligence Stop closing the trail just because of a little rain - you do it far too often. Parks continue to run year-round up north where it rains all the time - what's your excuse?If people can handle mud puddles on public land - let them.2 · 3 weeks ago

Christopher SlivaChristopher Sliva 100% Agree, why do the trails have to be DRY to be open? Isn't the whole point to be able to enjoy mother nature in its natural state? Maybe some of us would like to walk and see the water, maybe walking a little mud to feel like we're getting dirty. You've turned that place into some pre-madonna type place where it has to be dry and just perfect in order to be open, like a resort or something. It's a natural forest, let it be one and let everyone enjoy it....1 · 3 weeks ago

Christopher SlivaChristopher Sliva And can you please post pictures of the Rangers repairing all of these trails that take two weeks to repair?1 · 3 weeks ago

Monica ItamuraMonica Itamura Thanks for all the hard work!2 · 3 weeks ago

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Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve

8833 Harmony Grove Road
Escondido, CA 92029

Mailing Address
1966 Olivenhain Road
Encinitas, CA 92024


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