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Hodges Reservoir

Photo of Hodges Reservoir

Hodges Reservoir was created with the building of Hodges Dam on San Dieguito Creek in 1918. The City of San Diego purchased the dam and reservoir in 1925. Operated and maintained by the City of San Diego's Public Utilities Department, the reservoir currently serves the San Dieguito Water District and Santa Fe Irrigation District as well as the City. When full, the reservoir has 1,234 surface acres, a maximum water depth of 115 feet and 27 shoreline miles. Hodges Reservoir has a water storage capacity of 30,251 acre-feet. Hodges Reservoir has a water storage capacity of 30,251 acre feet. Water levels are monitored weekly.

There are six barbecues and 12 picnic tables in the picnic area. Patrons can bring self-contained gas barbecues for use in designated areas only. No ground fires or glass containers are allowed. Dogs must be kept on a leash at all times and at least 50 feet away from the water. Dogs are not allowed on any boats. Overnight camping is not allowed at Lake Hodges.


Please see "What's New - Hodges" for current days and hours of operation. Hodges' concession is open on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays only during the fishing season. Please call ahead to confirm they are open. Phone: 760-432-2023.

They rent boats on a first-come basis on those three days only, no reservations. There is bait available - shiners, crawdads, night crawlers, mealworms and wax worms. Patrons can use credit cards for boat rentals and other purchases but permits are cash only.


Map of Lake Hodges

Please see "What's New - Hodges" for current days and hours of operation. Hodges' fishing season runs February through October. At times when the concession is closed, patrons can purchase permits from the electronic pay station or iron ranger box (envelope system) at the lake.

The fishery consists of Florida-strain largemouth bass, crappie, bluegill, channel catfish, bullhead and carp. Minimum size limit for bass is 15 inches and minimum size limit for crappie is 10 inches. Fish limits are five bass, five catfish and 25 crappie/bluegill in aggregate. There is no limit on bullheads or carp.

Anglers 16 years of age or older must have a California state fishing license. Fish catch information is updated weekly.

Water Craft

In addition to fishing from boats and a wheelchair accessible fishing float, patrons can use float tubes, waders, or simply fish from shore, which is readily accessible by foot. Use of float tubes is restricted to within 150 feet or less from shore. Float tubers must wear chest waders and have a Coast Guard approved personal flotation device readily available at all times, and have 144 square inches of international orange visible at least 12 inches above the waterline. They must also possess a horn or whistle to warn approaching craft. Any float tube that uses oars or has a motor must purchase a private boat use permit.

Beginning April 2, 2014, boardsailing is allowed during the regular recreation schedule on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Boardsailing recreation at Hodges will reflect several changes since it was last offered in 2008. Please see Private Boats and Watercraft for current rules and regulations.

All private boats launching at Lake Hodges will be inspected for quagga mussels. Boats must be clean and dry or they will not be permitted to launch. Please review inspection procedures (PDF).

Hiking and Riding Trails

The dirt hiking and riding trails around much of the lake wind through ever-changing terrain and biological settings that include streams, lush river valleys, canopied oak forests, arid, rocky terrain and open fields. The topography changes from elevated vistas to marsh-like wetlands. There are accessible staging areas at five locations along the 7-mile primary route. For more information on Hodges trails, visit the website for San Dieguito River Park.


From Interstate 15, exit Via Rancho Parkway and turn left on E. Via Rancho Parkway, turn left on Lake Drive, and continue to the reservoir entrance.

More Information

For additional information, call the recording at 619-465-3474, contact the City's Reservoirs and Recreation Program office at 619-668-2050 or email