Two people stand on a grassy hillside in the King Range Wilderness, overlooking the Pacific Ocean.
Ranger on assignment confiscating contraban Geological formation known as a syncline at  Rainbow Basin Bighorn sheep poses atop terrain at Afton canyon Aerial view of Dumont Dunes Fire crews and a fire truck working on a local wildfire
Print Page
Bighorn Mountain Wilderness Area

Bighorn Mountain Wilderness

Legal Description
7.5 Topo Map 1, 2, 3
Photo Gallery



Size: 26,543 acres. Bighorn Mountain Wilderness Area

Location: San Bernardino County; 70 miles north of Palm Springs, California (Note: Boundary set backs from roads or trails are 30 to 300 feet)

Area Description : The rugged Bighorn Mountains in the north central portion of this wilderness are the foothills of the San Bernardino Mountains. Visitors can experience the rare ecological transition that occurs here, including Yucca and Joshua trees on the desert floor and stands of Jeffrey Pine at higher elevations, including the 7,500 foot high Granite Peak. Mule deer, mountain lion, bobcat and golden eagles make their home among the Joshua trees and yucca and stands of Jeffrey pine in the remote, higher elevations. Resident and migratory birds rest along Rattlesnake Canyon Creek, which flows northward through the wilderness to Johnson Valley. This wilderness encompasses BLM and Forest Service public lands.

Getting There : Access this wilderness area from State Highway 247.

Nonfederal Lands: Private lands may lie within the wilderness area. Please respect the owner and do not use these lands without permission.

Additional Information :

Signs indicating "Wilderness" and "Closed Road" or "Closed Route" are placed at various intervals.  Vehicles can be parked outside the wilderness boundary; however, the boundary is set back 30 feet from unmaintained dirt roads and 300 feet on paved roads.

Mechanized or motorized vehicles are NOT PERMITTED in a wilderness.

Hunting, fishing, and non-commercial trapping are allowed under state and local laws.

Pet are allowed, but please keep your pets under control at all times.

Horses are permitted, however you may be required to carry feed. 

Removal, disturbance, or attempting to remove archaelogical materials is a felony.  Selling, receiving, purchasing, transporting, exchanging or offering to do so is prohibited by law.

CAMPING: Camping is permitted, limited to 14 days.  After 14 days, campers must relocate at least 25 miles from previous site.

Help BLM preserve California's fragile deserts.  Please park your vehicle or set up camp in previously disturbed sites.

Gathering wood for campfires, when permitted, is limited to dead and down materials.  Do not cut live vegetation.

The BLM encourages all desert recreationists and travelers exploring public lands, not only within southern California but through the west, to use propylene glycol based antifreeze/coolant in their touring and recreation vehicles.  Proven safer, it will have minimal impacts on the wildlife and the environment should a leak occur.


  • Desert Access Guide:
    • Yucca Valley - #14
  • USGS 7.5 Quadrangle Maps:
    • Big Bear City
    • Bighorn Canyon
    • Onyx Peak
    • Rattlesnake Canyon
    • Rimrock
    • Yucca Valley North

    [Back]Go to BLM Wilderness List


  • Bureau of Land Management
    Barstow Field Office
    2601 Barstow Road
    Barstow, CA 92311
    Phone: (760) 252-6000
    Fax: (760) 252-6098
    Office Hours: 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., M-F
    Contact us by Email