HP Descr PhotoThe first High Point lookout tower was constructed on the site in 1935 by the Civilian Conservation Corps for the US Forest Service. That tower was replaced by the current structure in 1964.

A 13 x 13 foot CL-30 series steel cab sits atop an all-steel L-1600 series 67-6 tower. High Point Lookout is the tallest tower remaining in the Forest Service inventory in California.

The Cleveland National Forest last staffed the tower in 1992. The cab exterior and tower are in excellent condition. The interior was removed due to vandalism in 2005. A security gate has since been installed on the tower.

Tower restoration with new glass, cabinets and flooring was completed in 2009.

The San Diego-Riverside Chapter of the Forest Fire Lookout Association began staffing the tower with volunteers for fixed-point fire detection in 2009. FFLA-SDRC first achieved a 100% staffing during the 2013 fire season. FFLA-SDRC has achieved that same 100% fire season staffing for every year since with few exceptions due to weather or similar personal considerations.

Historic Photos

Live Video Cams

Tower Panoramas

Palomar Mountain Interpretive Portfolio


High Point Tower is located on the very top of Palomar Mountain with an elevation at the tower base of 6140 feet. It currently is only accessible via the Palomar Divide or High Point Truck trails off Highway 79 on the north and east sides of Palomar Mountain. The Cab is only open to authorized personnel but visitors are welcome to come and enjoy a picnic on our table at the base of the tower. Please note however that there are no public bathroom facilities at High Point.