Sand dunes dominate the landscape in the North Algodones Dunes Wilderness Area.
ATV rider heads into sunset. Hiker Algodones Dunes Sunflower Off-Highway Vehicle Slipface
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El Centro Field Office

Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area
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Buttercup and Cahuilla Ranger Stations are open for the season.  Stations are open Friday-Sunday 9:00 am to 5:30 pm.

Sand rails (and their drivers!) enjoy the view.  Photo credit: Jim Shepard

 Campground Hosts Wanted! for various dunes locations.

Fee & Permit Information

When do I need a permit? 
Permits are required from October 1 through April 15 each year.  
Permit free days will be consistent with those authorized by the President, the Secretary of the Interior, the BLM Director, California State Director, and the BLM El Centro Field Office Authorized Officer.

Who needs a permit? 
One permit is needed per primary vehicle.  A primary vehicle is any street legal vehicle used for transportation to the recreation site.  A permit is required at all times while in the fee area.  Please keep your permit until you exit the fee area.

Where can I purchase a permit?
Save time and money by purchasing your permit online or at one of the multiple locations prior to arriving at the Imperial Sand Dunes.  For a map of locations to purchase your permit or to purchase your permit online visit:   For each seasonal or weekly permit purchased online you may purchase a second weekly permit for just $25.00. 

Weekly permits are also available for purchase at the Cahuilla and Buttercup Ranger Stations for $50.00.

Dune Programs 

 OHV Safety and Education Programs
 Dune Guard
 Take it Outside!

 Dune Video

 In the Field...

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Bureau of Land Management
El Centro Field Office
1661 S. 4th Street
El Centro CA 92243
Phone: (760) 337-4400
Fax: (760) 337-4490
Office Hours: 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., M-F
Contact us by Email