The pharmacological and single-channel properties of Ca2+ channels were studied in the somata and dendrites of adult cerebellar Purkinje cells. The Ca2+ channels were exclusively of the high threshold type: low threshold Ca2+ channels were not found. These high threshold channels were not blocked by omega-conotoxin GVIA and were inhibited rather than activated by BAY K 8644. They were therefore pharmacologically distinct from high threshold N- and L-type channels. Funnel web spider toxin was an effective blocker. The channels opened to conductance levels of 9, 14, and 19 pS (in 110 mM Ba2+). These slope conductances were in the range of those reported for N- and L-type channels. Our results are in agreement with previous reports suggesting that Ca2+ channels in Purkinje cells can be classified as P-type channels according to their pharmacology. The results also suggest that distinctions among Ca2+ channel types based on the single-channel conductance are not definitive.