Riverside County, Southern California

Lake Perris

Lake Perris

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Lake Perris Museum

The Lake Perris Museum provides a comprehensive interpretation of Native American history, the cultures of the various native tribes throughout the southern California desert region and provides an educational experience into the cultures of the Indigenous peoples of the southern California deserts.

Ya'i Heki' (pronounced yahee ehkey) is translated from the Cahuilla language meaning "Home of the Wind". This museum is one of a series of regional museums funded by the State of California.

Open to the public
Saturday and Sunday:   10 - 4
Fridays:   10 - 2

School Tours are available by appointment on Tuesdays and Thursdays. For more information about arranging a school group tour call Ellen Absher at (951) 940-5656
Lake Perris Museum

Photo of Lake Perris, CA

Lake Perris

Lake Perris is a convenient boating, camping, and fishing destination for the greater Los Angeles area. Despite a slight draw-down of the water level, the lake still offers plenty of room for water sports like waterskiing and jet skiing, broad beaches, and good fishing.

Dam construction will not affect boating, fishing, and camping activities. Rock climbing at Big Rock will be suspended during the 3-year project.

Lake Perris State Recreation Area is located just a few miles east of Riverside. Visitors are advised to make reservations before arriving at the lake. (800) 444-7275.

Spring Park Hours:   6:00 AM - 8:00 PM, Thursday through Monday for day use. Camping is available Thursday through Sunday nights. Boating hours are 6:00 AM to 6:30 PM
Hours are subject to change. Check Lake Perris SRA website for updates.
Summer Park Hours:   6:00 AM - 10:00 PM   Lake Hours:   6:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Entrance Fee:   $10 per vehicle (9 people) seniors 62+ $9
Per Watercraft:  $8 (canoes and kayaks are free)
Annual Passes:   Vehicle - $195, Watercraft $100 (good at most State Parks)

Low water levels mean boaters should use extra caution, especially around the east end and near the island.


Lake Perris is open to all kinds of boating. Because of limited space, the number of boats allowed on the water is restricted, so reservations are recommended. Waterskiers, wake boarders, jet skiers, and all other kinds of water sports are popular at the lake. Nearly half the lake is held to a 5 MPH speed limit while the main body of water has a 35 MPH limit. Newly extended hours allow boating into the evening.


There is a single marina at Lake Perris, which for a lake of its size is adequate. The marina has a narrow selection of boats for rent, a store, and boat ramps. Boats can be kept in slips or in dry storage.


Lake Perris was originally stocked with Alabama Spotted Bass and during the lake's early years record fish were caught. The introduction of largemouth bass has diminished the spotted bass fishing. Nevertheless, Lake Perris is considered a top fishing lake for bass, trout, and other species. Large portions of the lake are kept to a 5 MPH speed limit.


Lake Perris has one large family campground with sites for tents and for RVs. The sites are close together with sparse vegetation. Water and electricity hook-ups are provided at the RV sites. There is a nearby horse camp with corrals. Campgrounds have hot showers. A number of good RV Resorts are located in the area.


There is no lodging at Lake Perris . Plentiful lodging can be found in nearby Moreno Valley and other cities in the area.


Lake Perris has a rugged appearance with the rocky Bernasconi Hills rising nearby and little vegetation in the area.

Nearby Communities

Moreno Valley is only a couple of miles to the north while the larger cities of Riverside, Ontario, and Redlands are nearby.

Lake Perris Facts
Lake Size: 2,250 surface acres
Current Maximum Depth: 85 feet
Length: 2.8 miles
Shoreline: 10 miles
Dam Construction: 1970-1973
Maximum Lake Elevation: 1,560 feet
Average High Air Temperatures
  spring: 77 º
  summer: 94 º
  fall: 85 º
  winter: 66 º
Summer Water Temperature: 79 º

Recreation around Lake Perris

  • Swimming: Moreno Beach at parking lots 8-10 and Perris Beach near parking lots 1-4 have designated swimming areas. lifeguards are on duty during the summer and on weekends in the fall and spring.
  • Scuba Diving: Allowed at Perris Beach.
  • Hiking and Bicycling   A 9-mile hiking and cycling trail leads around the lake. Another trail leads to the scenic overlook at Terri Peak.
  • Horse Back Riding:   A horse trail circles the lake and extends into undeveloped parts of the recreation area. Spring is best to enjoy wildflowers on your ride. .
  • Rock Climbing:   Big Rock closed during the 3-years of dam construction. Big Rock in the Lake Perris SRA attracts rock climbers from around the area. Routes range from Class 4 to 5.10d. There is one A3 route.


California's Greatest Lakes

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