El Centro Field Office

Pilot Knob Long Term Visitor Area (LTVA)

Directions:I-8(West from Yuma, AZ/East from El Centro,CA) to Sidewinder Rd.(Exit 164.) South on Sidewider Rd.
Description:The area in and around Pilot Knob is rich in both human and natural history. At one time, Patton's troops trained here in preparation for desert fighting in World War II. A State of California Historic Marker lies on the site of Patton's camp. The marker is located just north of Interstate 8 on Sidewinder Road. The Fort Yuma Indian Reservation borders public lands near Pilot Knob.
Facilities:Nearest facilities are located in Yuma, AZ, seven miles east of Pilot Knob.
Permits:An LTVA permit is required from September 15th through April 15th. There are two types of permits: long term and short visit. The long term permit is $180(U.S. funds only) for the entire season. A short visit permit is $40(U.S. funds only) for 14 consecutive days from date of purchase. Permits may be purchased on site or at:

BLM El Centro Field Office
1661 South Fourth Street
El Centro, CA   92243
(760) 337-4400

BLM Palm Springs Field Office
1201 Bird Center Drive
Palm Springs, CA  92262
(760) 833-7100

BLM Yuma Field Office
2555 East Gila Ridge Road
Yuma, AZ  85365
(928) 317-3200


During the off-season, April 16th through September 14th, visitors may stay for a maximum of 14 days within a 28 day period. There is no charge during this time.

  • Please observe all posted signs.
  • A portion of the Pilot Knob area has been designated an ACEC.
  • The speed limit in an LTVA is 15mph unless posted otherwise.
  • Golden Access/Age/Eagle Passport discounts do not apply.

In addition to existing rules and regulations, there are 35 supplemental rules which are used to help manage the campgrounds. These rules are published each season in brochure format.

Map to Pilot Knob Long Term Visitor Area