FAQs 2019-09-14T23:26:17+00:00

Frequently Asked Questions

General | Boating | Fishing | Camping | Campground | Reservations

Helpful Camping Tips

  • Remember to bring warm clothing for chilly winter nights/mornings.
  • Waterproof tent gear during rain or snow months.
  • Hiking shoes, hat, water bottle.
  • Always pack a First Aid Kit (including sunscreen).
  • Remember to bring insect repellent and or Bug Spray, Citronella Candles.
  • Please bring sunscreen, hats, skins and or rash guards for sun protection.
  • Shade is limited, so please bring a canopy, umbrella, etc.
  • Cell service and Internet access is spotty. Please plan accordingly.

Book Lake Hemet Camping Reservations

Site Selection/Availability Tip: click/hover over a campsite to check availability; available sites will show a green “book” message, unavailable sites will not show the green “book” message and  turn white on the map after checking site availability.

Please be respectful of your neighbors. This includes keeping your campsite free of clutter and trash. Be courteous of loud noises and smells. Please use designated trash cans for garbage and disposable trash. Quiet time is a a prompt 10:00pm to 8:00am.

  • Where is the nearest town?
    The closest town is Idyllwild, and it is approx 8 miles from Lake Hemet. Anza is approx 18 miles from the Campground. Hemet is approx. 24 miles. Palm Desert is 31 miles. Temecula is 36 miles.
  • Is there a grocery store nearby?
    The Lake Hemet Market is located at the entrance to the campground. Chain grocery stores and shopping malls are located in Palm Desert, Temecula, and nearby Hemet.
  • Where is the nearest gas station?
    The closest gas station is Mountain Center approx. 4 miles from Lake Hemet; Spirit Fuel. It is located at the intersection of Highway 74 and Highway 243. Anza also has two gas stations on Hwy. 371; Circle K and Mobil. Please remember when traveling to Lake Hemet to fill your gas tank before leaving a major metropolitan area, as some of the local gas stations in the mountain areas are closed by 9:00pm.
  • Can campers have visitors at their campsite?
    Yes, but they will have to pay the Day Use Fee upon entering the Campground. Should your visitors find themselves relaxing in the peaceful environment that surrounds Lake Hemet, enjoying the clean mountain air and bright starlit sky, and decide to stay past the Day Use check out time (sunset), they will have to pay the difference for overnight camping.

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Boating Questions

  • Are boats inspected upon arrival?
    Yes, it is a State Law that all boats must be inspected for Quagga Mussels before launching in Lake Hemet. It does not matter whether your boat has been on dry land or not, when it enters the Campground an inspection is mandatory before entering the water. Your boat must be clean, drained and dry. Any moisture is an immediate failure of the Quagga Mussel Inspection. Boats leaving Lake Hemet may request a vessel band which allows re-entry without paying the re-inspection fee as long as the band is valid and unbroken.
  • Can I launch my own boat and what length of boat is allowed? What type of boats and engine size are allowed on Lake Hemet?
    Yes, you can launch your own boat, and it must be a minimum of 10′ in length and have a minimum beam width of 3′. We allow fishing boats, motor boats, row boats and kayaks on the lake. We do not allow inflatables of any type.Engines can be two or four strokes; however, the speed limit on the lake is 10 mph, and 5 mph in the marina.
  • Can I bring my own kayak or canoe to Lake Hemet?
    You may bring your own kayak. If you plan on bringing a kayak … it needs to be 10 feet in length or longer. We allow canoes equipped with an outrigger. We do not allow inflatable boats, sailboats, or race boats on the lake.
  • Are sailboats or PWC’s allowed on Lake Hemet?
    No. We do not allow sailboats or personal water craft (jet skis) on Lake Hemet.

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Fishing Questions

  • Do I need a state license to fish at Lake Hemet?
    Yes. Anyone 16 years of age or older who is fishing shall have a valid California State Fishing License (except on state “Fish for Free” days).
  • How much is a fishing license?
    For any questions you have regarding CA fishing license prices, rules and regulations for the state of California please visit Sport Fishing Fees and Descriptions
  • Where can I purchase a State Fishing License or annual permit?
    You may purchase a Fishing License or permit our Lake Hemet Market located at the entrance to the Campground.
  • What types of fish are in Lake Hemet? What are the limits for fish caught?
    Trout, Bass, Blue Gill, Catfish. Trout is the only fish we stock. The limits are: Trout – 5, Bass – 2 (min. 15″), Bluegill – 25, Catfish – 5.
  • How often is Lake Hemet stocked?
    Lake Hemet does our own trout stockings from Jess Ranch located in Apple Valley,  We stock 1300 pounds monthly February through May and September through October.
  • Does Lake Hemet allow night fishing?
    Yes, you may fish at night on the shoreline of Lake Hemet until 10:00pm. There are no boats allowed on the lake past sunset.
  • What type of live bait is allowed in Lake Hemet?
    The only live bait allowed in Lake Hemet is night crawlers and red worms.
  • Does Lake Hemet sell fishing bait?
    Yes, you can get bait, fishing tackle, and many other fishing items at the Lake Hemet Market and the small marina store.
  • Can I fish by the Dam?
    No, there is no fishing allowed near or by the Dam. Boats must stay a minimum of 100ft from the Dam. Nor is there access to the Dam by car or foot.

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Camping Questions

  • Do you have full hookup sites available at Lake Hemet?
    There are full hook up sites and the number available varies based on occupancy.
  • Do you have dry camping sites available at Lake Hemet?
    Lake Hemet has dry camping sites for tent or RV camping. A majority of dry camping sites also have water available. Lake Hemet has both full hook up and dry camping.
  • Can I camp in a tent? How many vehicles can be parked on a site? Is there a limit to the number of people per camping site?
    Yes, you can camp in a tent in our tent camping area. (No tents in the RV sites) There may be up to a maximum of 8 people per site regardless of age. The maximum number of vehicles per site shall not exceed 2. One vehicle is included in your camp site fees.
  • Can I have a campfire at my site? Do all campsites have fire rings?
    Yes, you may have a campfire only in designated fire rings that are provided by the campground on every site. If you are bringing your own firewood it should be no longer than 24″ in length. Please do not bring rail logs, pallets, or pre-treated construction wood containing nails or other hardware. There are no open ground fires allowed. No bonfires. No fires under trees. No splitting wood in Campground. Please do not leave unused wood in the Campground upon leaving. All rules must be followed when starting a campfire. All campfires must be attended at all times and cannot be left burning or smoldering without direct supervision. Any failure to comply with campfire rules is subject to inspection by Campground Personnel, Management, and Rangers, and may be cause for being asked to leave Lake Hemet Campground.
  • Can I have a charcoal grill at my site?
    Yes. We allow charcoal grills and we also have several charcoal grills in our picnic area that are available for use.
  • Are there picnic tables for each site?
    Yes, every site has a picnic table and fire ring.
  • Can I bring my dog(s)?
    Yes, you may bring your furry friends. Lake Hemet has a maximum of 2 dogs per family. Your pets must be leashed or restrained at all times while in the Campground. The leash cannot be longer than 6′. NO DOGS are allowed in the lake. Please do not leave your dog unattended or alone in a vehicle at any time while at Lake Hemet.
  • Can we have a generator at our site?
    Yes, you may run a generator at your site. A properly running generator is allowed between the hours of 8:00am until 10:00pm year round. Loud, construction type generators are not permitted. All generators must be on the same site as the camper. These rules are subject to change only in the case of emergency and such operation is approved by the Campground Manager.
  • Can I camp along the shoreline of Lake Hemet?
    There are many tent camping sites that are situated on the shoreline with a breathtaking view of Lake Hemet with Little Thomas Mountain as the backdrop.
  • Where can I purchase fire wood?
    Lake Hemet Market is located at the entrance to the Campground and sells bundles of firewood.
  • If we are camping in an RV with full hookups, can we also pitch a tent on our site?
    No, we do not allow a tent to be staked in Racoon Camp 1 with full hook up sites for RV’s. If you have further questions regarding tents in Racoon Camp 1, please contact our staff and we will be happy to answer all your questions.

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Campground Questions

  • Is there security at the campground?
    Yes, Lake Hemet is patrolled by resident staff and hosts. We also have a Riverside County Sheriff’s substation located within several hundred feet from our Campground Entrance. tel:951-776-1099. Emergency dial 911.
  • Can we bring our own boat to Lake Hemet?
    Yes, you may launch a private boat on Lake Hemet. It must be at least 10′ feet in length. The speed limit on the lake is 10 mph, and the speed limit in the marina is 5mph. All State boating laws apply.
  • Does Lake Hemet rent boats?
    Yes, we have motor boats, pontoon boats, and even kayaks for rent.
  • When are the quiet hours?
    Our quiet hours are 10:00pm until 8:00am daily.
  • What are the laundry hours?
    Our laundry facilities are available for use 7:00am to 10:00pm daily during the summer and 7:00am to 8:00pm daily during the offseason.
  • Are there restroom/shower facilities available in the campground? Do the showers have hot water?
    Yes, we have restrooms and showers located in several areas throughout the Campground. Yes, the showers have hot running water. There is no cost for the Showers.
  • Can I swim in Lake Hemet?
    Yes, only in the waterpark area of the lake … the waterpark is generally open from Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day Weekend. For public safety, lifeguards are provided in these buoyed off areas only and any water contact outside of these areas is prohibited. Should you violate this ordinance, you may be immediately removed from the campground. (Separate entrance fees for Water park, https://lakehemetrecreation.com/lake-hemet-waterpark/ )
  • Is hunting allowed at Lake Hemet?
    No, there is no hunting allowed at Lake Hemet. Please contact the local Forest Service in Idyllwild for information regarding hunting, hunting season, designated hunting areas, and the appropriate license required.
  • Are motorcycles allowed?  Motorcycles are allowed in designated campsites only and may not be used for general transportation throughout the Campground.  Please respect the peace and keep motor noise to the barest minimum.
  • Is skateboarding allowed? For guests safety, no skateboarding is allowed on the property.
  • Are pets allowed? Pets (up to two and must be on 6’ leash at all times) are allowed on the property. Loud or aggressive pets will cause their owners to be asked to leave.

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Reservation Questions

  • How do I make a reservation?
    Reservations may be made online or by contacting our friendly staff Monday through Friday between 9:00am and 5:00pm at (951) 659-2680.
  • Is it necessary to have a reservation to camp at Lake Hemet?
    While it is not necessary to have a reservation to camp at Lake Hemet, reservations are recommended. Reservations are especially encouraged during peak summer months and major holiday weekends.
  • Does Lake Hemet require a deposit when making reservations?
    We require full payment at the time of booking reservations. We accept VISA, Discover, and MasterCard. Please review our reservation cancellation policy before booking a reservation.
  • How far in advance should we make our reservation for Camping over a Holiday Weekend?
    We encourage making reservations at least two-three month in advance of all major Holiday Weekends.
  • What are check-in and check-out times?
    Check in time is 2:00pm and Check out time is 12:00 noon. Cabin check in time is: 3:00pm and cabin check out time is 11:00am. Late Check-Out Policy:  Late check out at sunset is an option for campers wishing to stay longer for an additional $15 Sunday through Wednesday, excluding any holidays. Late check out not currently available for camping cabins. However, all guests are still welcome to stay for the remainder of the day at Lake Hemet to enjoy fishing, boating and other recreation after they pack up their cabin or campsite.
  • How do I cancel a reservation?
    You may cancel or change your reservation by calling our staff at (951) 659-2680. Changes are permitted until 72 hours before your stay. There is a $9.00 change fee. Cancellation with 30 days or more prior notice is subject to a $9.00 fee. Cancellations made between 30 days and 72 hours prior notice will forfeit one night as a cancellation fee. Cancellations made with less than 72 hours notice are non-refundable.
  • How many vehicles are allowed in a campsite?
    There is parking for one vehicle included in your campsite fees. A fee of $25/per night applies to the second vehicle in a camp site.
  • Does Lake Hemet have seasonal rates for camping or boating?
    No, our Camping Rates are not seasonal.
  • Does Lake Hemet offer any discounts?
    Yes, Lake Hemet offers specials and discounted rates for camping and boating.  If you would like to be notified of upcoming specials, please sign up for our email newsletter.  Or, you may contact our Lake Hemet staff to inquire about current specials. Military and first responder discounts are available here.
  • What is the maximum length of RV that a campsite will accommodate?
    The maximum length for an RV that our campground can accommodate is 40′. We have a limited number of sites available for an RV of that length, so we encourage early reservations.
  • Does Lake Hemet accommodate group tent camping?
    Yes. We have Group Sites for group camping in four areas. Please visit our “Group Camping” page. If you have any further questions about group camping please call our staff at (951) 659-2680. More information here.
  • Does Lake Hemet accommodate RV group camping?
    Yes. The Wagon Master of your group may contact our staff at (951) 659-2680 to make reservations, check availability, or for more information. Our friendly staff is available to answer questions about planning your RV Camping group.
  • Does Lake Hemet host special events for organizations: Day Use and/or overnight camping?
    Yes. Please contact our staff, or the Campground Manager for more information and to answer all questions regarding your specific event or group.
  • Are there cabins or RVs to rent at the campground?
    Yes, Lake Hemet has three onsite vacation rentals that sleep, 4+ persons.  You may contact the reservations staff at (951) 659-2680 or make reservations online.

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