Exploring the Abandoned Lake Dolores Waterpark


If you’ve driven to Las Vegas from Los Angeles or San Diego, you’ve passed by the abandoned Lake Dolores Waterpark.

Derelict buildings on the side of the highway on the way to or from Las Vegas are a common sight, so you probably didn’t give it much thought.

After all, what more could there be?

Surprisingly, quite a lot.

One set of ramshackle buildings belongs to Lake Dolores Waterpark, an easy day trip from Las Vegas.

History of Lake Dolores

The abandoned Lake Dolores Waterpark was once the flourishing 273 acre Lake Dolores Resort RV campground and Rock a Hoola Water Park.

Now, it sits in ruins.

A playground for the urban explorer, skateboarder, tagger, and anyone else brave enough to check out the graffiti painted buildings.

Pro-tip: Lake Dolores Waterpark is private property.

Lake Dolores Waterpark was built by Bob Byers in 1962 as a place for his extended family to gather. The man-made lake was named after his wife, Dolores.

Byers added waterslides, ziplines, and other features to the park and opened it to the public. For two decades it was the hot spot.

In the 90s Beyer sold Lake Dolores Waterpark to an investment group who modernized the park, added memorabilia from the 1950s and 1960s, and renamed it Rock a Hoola Waterpark.

Rock a Hoola had a few good years until an off-duty employee was injured and won a $4.4 million lawsuit, forcing the park into bankruptcy.

The court gave the park back to Dolores Byers who then sold it to another investment company. After renovations, the waterpark reopened as Discovery Waterpark in 2002. But it couldn’t stay in business and closed in 2004.

In March, the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors approved a plan to restore Lake Dolores. Investors hope to reopen by 2023.  

How to Get to Lake Dolores Waterpark

Lake Dolores Waterpark is located at 72 Hacienda Road, Newberry Springs, CA 92365

From the 15 North heading to Vegas, you exit Minneola Road, turn right. Then you turn left on Yermo Road. And turn Left on Coyote Lake Road. Drive a couple of miles and it will be on the left hand side.

From the 15 South leaving Las Vegas, you’ll exit Harvard Road and turn right. Turn left on Hacienda Road. Drive a couple of miles and the park will be on your right.

Would you explore the abandoned Lake Dolores Waterpark?

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About Debra Schroeder

Debra is a former 12-year travel industry executive and has traveled the world using airline miles and credit card points since 1994. She’ll teach you the secrets of traveling well for less.

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