A Carrizo Plain National Monument sign stands in a large valley with mountains in the background.
Rafting the Kern River Three Pump Jacks, Midway-Sunset Oilfield Painted Rock. Carrizo Plain National Monument. Poppy Piedras Blancas Lightstation, San Simeon
BLM>California>Bakersfield>What We Do>Recreation Program>SRPs
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Bakersfield Field Office

Special Recreation Permits (SRPs)

SRP Quick Links





If you plan to conduct a commercial activity, host a competitive event or hold an organized group activity on the National System of Public Lands you might need a Special Recreation Permit (SRP).

Preapplication Interview Checklist:

  • Are you charging a fee?
  • Do you expect to make money on the event or is the fee to cover expenses?
  • Will there be a competition?
  • Will you advertise?
  • Will you mark a course?
  • Will you be expecting vehicles at your event? (How many?)
  • Will your event involve public lands?

If you answered "yes" to any of these questions, you may need a permit from the BLM. 

SRPs are issued by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to achieve recreation and resource management objectives. They allow the agency to satisfy recreational demand within allowable use levels while minimizing adverse impacts, protecting natural and cultural resources and eliminating user conflicts. 

An SRP authorizes the permit holder use of the Public Lands, including its associated waters, subject to the terms and conditions of the permit. SRPs also ensure that the public receives a fair-value return for commercial activities that take place on BLM public lands by charging fees for permitted activities.                                  

SRPs are issued for commercial use (including vending), competitive use, organized groups, special area use and if the agency determines that it is necessary based on planning decisions, resource concerns, potential users conflicts, or public health and safety.

Fees are associated with SRPs in order to for the public to receive a fair-value return for non-casual recreational use of public lands. The statutory authorities underlying these regulations are the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA), 43 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.,  and the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act (REA) of 2004. For current fee information and any questions regarding the SRP process, please contact the Bakersfield Field Office Outdoor Recreation Planner at (661) 391-6000.

The links at the top of this page go to complete information the BLM’s SRP program, and  information specific to the State of California, in the Special Application Permit Information Booklet (BLM, August 2007). This information booklet includes an application form and details about each permit and the application process. The other links above go to a printable copy of the application form and an electronic version of the  Post Use Report.

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Cyclists competing in a BLM-permitted race.


Rafting Lower Kern River, California

Mountain bike rider finding a trail

Contact Information

Outdoor Recreation Planner 


Bureau of Land Management

Bakersfield Field Office

3801 Pegasus Drive

Bakersfield, CA 93308

(661) 391 6000