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Reservoirs and Lakes

Barrett Reservoir

Access to Barrett Reservoir is by reservation only. Patrons are limited to two vehicles per reservation. Photo identification of reservation holder required, the entire group must enter the area at the same time and be escorted to the reservoir.

Hours of Operation

Barrett Reservoir is closed the first Wednesday of each month. More info about closure

Fishing Season


Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays

Entry: 5 a.m., 6 a.m. and 7 a.m. only

Departure: noon, 2 p.m., 4 p.m., 6 p.m. and sunset

Waterfowl Season


Wednesdays and Saturdays

2023-2024 Barrett Waterfowl Registration

Waterfowl Hunting Times

Holiday Schedule:

OPEN - Independence Day if July 4 is on a Wednesday, Saturday or Sunday

CLOSED - Memorial Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day


Water Activities, including:

  • Boats (by reservation only)
  • Kayaks
  • Float Tubes


Leashed Dogs

Picnic Tables

Barbecue Areas


No Camping

No Concessions

No Dogs Allowed on Boats

No Glass Containers

No Littering

No Private Boats

No Row Boats

No Water Fountains

No Fish Cleaning Stations


Fishing and Hunting

The fishing season is May through September. Fishing is available on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. For hunting information, call 619-668-2050 or email

Fishing rules: (Why are there fishing rules?)

  • Use artificial lures with barbless hooks only
  • Catch and release only

Fish Conservation

These rules were designed primarily to protect the last significant population of northern-strain largemouth black bass in the area. In virtually all other waters in Southern California, these fish have been replaced by the Florida-strain version of largemouth black bass. Other species include bluegill, bullheads, and both white and black crappie. Threadfin shad and silverside minnows are the primary forage fish.

What you'll find here...

Largemouth Bass on white background
Largemouth Bass

Bluegill Sunfish on white background

Bullhead Catfish on white background
Bullhead Catfish

Permits and Fees

Reservations on Ticketmaster go on sale the second Tuesday of the month at 7 p.m. You must buy your ticket at least one day before your fishing day. Read disclaimer


There is a limit of one reservation per household (same address or computer) on the first day reservations go on sale. After the first day if there are any reservations remaining, then patrons can purchase as many reservations as they want. Ticketmaster will sell one-half the reservations per day on its web site and one-half at the call-in center. There are no physical tickets issued. Photo ID of the reservation holder will be required at the gate, and all parties on that reservation must enter at the same time.

A valid California Fishing License is required for anglers 16 years of age or older. California Department of Fish and Wildlife Freshwater Sport regulations and City regulations are strictly enforced.

Boat Reservations

  • Includes up to one person, boat and motor
  • You may bring up to three additional guests for $30 per guest
  • Maximum of two vehicles per reservation
$100 (plus Ticketmaster fees)

Shore/Float Tube Fishing Reservations

  • You may bring one additional guest for $30
  • Maximum of two vehicles per reservation
$30 (plus Ticketmaster fees) per person
Hunting Permit Waterfowl Hunting Info
Adult (ages 16 years and older) $30
Youth (ages 8 to 15 years) $15

Row Boat and Blind Reservation



Concession facilities are NOT available. Anglers must bring their own water, food and lures to this reservoir. Glass containers are prohibited.

About Barrett Reservoir

Barrett Dam was completed by the City of San Diego in 1922, creating Barrett Reservoir. Located at the confluence of Cottonwood and Pine Valley creeks, Barrett Reservoir is approximately 35 miles east of San Diego. Located behind locked gates in a remote area of San Diego County and closed for many years, access has been offered on a limited basis by reservation only since 1994. Barrett Reservoir has a water storage capacity of 34,805.5 acre feet. For more information about Barrett Reservoir and Dam, View the fact sheet.

  • Aerial view of Barrett Reservoir

Photo courtesy of