Ord Mountain Route Network
The Ord Mountain Route Network is south of Barstow and links the Stoddard Valley and Johnson Valley Off-Highway Vehicle Areas, also known as Open Areas. Travel within the network is limited to posted open routes; NO CROSS-COUNTRY TRAVEL IS PERMITTED. Open Routes are posted periodically along their entire length. The Ord Mountain Route Network is a trial area to examine strategies for designating routes in the Limited Use Areas of the Barstow Resource Area. If you wish to engage in "technical" or cross-country off-road vehicle activities, please use the Johnson Valley or Stoddard Valley Open Area. Please note that routes which are not marked as Open are CLOSED to motorized vehicle travel.
The Ord Mountain Route Network provides an array of recreational opportunities, including hunting, hiking, and 4-wheel-drive travel. Camping is allowed. Keep in mind that there are parcels of private land within the area. Please respect the rights of private land owners.
Hiking and Sightseeing
Opportunities for hiking and sightseeing exist throughout the area. This diverse landscape, with its many mountains and washes, offers extensive areas to explore and hike. Except on designated routes, vehicles are not permitted to travel in washes. This makes washes ideal hiking trails to explore and in which to experience natural conditions. Don't forget to bring your camera!
Desert wildlife is best viewed during the early morning and the evening hours when it is cool and the animals are most active. Bird watching is best in washes with thick vegetation. The desert tortoise, a federally-protected threatened species, lives throughout the area. It can be found in and along the sides of roadways and washes. It is unlawful to possess or harm desert tortoises. Several routes have been closed to protect them and their habitat. Poisonous wildlife, including rattlesnakes and scorpions, will leave you alone unless disturbed or cornered. To protect yourself, wear sturdy boots and watch your step.
You can hunt dove, quail, and chuckar in season, but seasons and allowable bag limits will vary. Contact the California Fish and Game to get current information. Hunting in the immediate vicinity on wildlife waters, guzzlers included, is limited to 30 minutes. Be sure you have permission to hunt and use firearms on private land. On public lands managed by BLM, all county, state and federal regulations are in effect.
Safety hazards are common throughout this desert area. Besides poisonous snakes and weather extremes, mining operations from the past have left behind many deadly hazards. Abandoned mines and tunnels, with their deep shafts should be avoided. Take sufficient water, food, clothes, equipment, and first aid supplies for your activity. Carry at least one gallon of water, per-person per-day, if you are hiking. Be sure to check weather forecasts before visiting this area. Thunderstorms can cause flash flooding in the canyons and washes . Leave word with someone about where you are going and when you will return.
Rules and Regulations
- Routes marked "Open Route" on brown sign posts with a number designating the route (OM-1, OM-2 for example) are open to all motorized vehicle use. All other routes are considered "Closed".
- Many routes shown on the BLM Desert Access Guide maps are now closed and are marked with red sign posts with "Closed Route" printed on them. This has been done to eliminate negative impacts to these areas.
- Private land owners, legal grazing allottees, and mining operators (with Operations Plans on file with the BLM within the Ord Mountain area) have rights of access. It is not the intent of BLM to affect private rights or interests in the area. Further, this does not imply BLM jurisdiction over private lands within the area, unless authorized by the land owner.
- Camping is allowed up to 50 feet from the edge of an open route. Camping on private land requires the landowner's permission.
- County, State, and Federal hunting and shooting regulations are in effect during the "small game bird" hunting season.
- California Fish and Game Regulation Title 14 states that, "Camping is not allowed within 200 yards of watering places."
- San Bernardino County Ordinance 22.011 prohibits the discharge of firearms within 150 yards of livestock or buildings.
- All other applicable County, State and Federal laws and regulations apply.
- Public lands within the California Desert District of the Bureau of Land Management fall within one of the following three types of vehicle use designations:
- (1) Areas that are CLOSED to all vehicle travel, such as designated wilderness and Areas of Critical Environmental Concern.
- (2) In the Open Areas of Stoddard Valley, Johnson Valley, El Mirage, Dumont Dunes, and Rasor cross-country travel is designated OPEN and is allowed.
- (3) The remainder of the BLM-managed lands are LIMITED areas on which vehicles can travel only on existing or designated routes. (The Ord Mountain and Juniper Flats areas have this type of route designation in place.)