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El Centro Field Office

S U M M E R 2014

Seasonal Fire Restrictions Affect
Camping, Target Shooting

Find out if your favorite camping or target shooting location has fire restrictions! (Scroll to maps following Fire Prevention Orders.)

Lark Canyon OHV Area and Campground


The water system in the upper Lark Canyon campground is unavailable for use.  Water has been restored to lower Lark Canyon and Cottonwood campgrounds. 

Among the live oaks in southeastern San Diego County, is the Lark Canyon Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Area and Campground. Located in McCain Valley Resource Conservation Area, Lark Canyon OHV Area is designed specifically for motorcycles. All Terrain Vehicles (ATVs) might experience difficulty using the narrow trails.

Several miles of trails are located in the OHV area. The Wounded Knee Trail is a challenging ride that rewards riders with views of McCain Valley and surrounding area. All of the trails in the OHV area are signed. The area is designated as limited and riders are required to stay on designated trails. Cross-country travel is prohibited. Except for travel in to or out of the campground, OHV use within the campground is prohibited.

Lark Canyon Campground is a year-round facility with 15 developed campsites. Fire rings, tables, water (not tested safe for drinking), and six vault toilets are found in the campground. Group camping sites are available. The majority of visits occur in the late spring, summer, and fall. Occasionally, special events such as motorcycle trails events will take place in the OHV area. Spectators are welcome, but please obey all special event signs.

A $6.00 per campsite fee is required for camping at all BLM campsites. All sites are available on a first come first served basis. Camping is limited to 14 days within a 28 day period. Except for backpacking, all camping in McCain Valley must be in a designated campsite. Please bring your own firewood, as firewood is scarce. A campfire permit may be required. Contact the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection for regulations.

Please remember the following when riding in the Lark Canyon OHV Area:

  • Only street legal vehicles are allowed on McCain Valley Road.
  • All OHVs must be currently registered for street or off-road use.
  • Lark Canyon OHV Area is open to OHVs less than 40 inches wide.
  • Camping is not permitted in the Day Use Area.
  • OHV use in the wash and on the wash bank next to the campground is prohibited.
  • Spark arresters are required on all OHVs.
  • OHVs are not allowed in Cottonwood Campground.
  • Target shooting and the use of fireworks is prohibited.


OHV Trail Map (*.pdf)

Hours of Operations:
24 Hours / 7 days a week

$6 per campsite, per night

Seasonal Restrictions:

Red Sticker Season:
October 1 - April 30

Fire Restrictions:
Stage III -  Recreational/Target shooting of any type is prohibited. Setting, building, maintaining, attending, or using open fire of any kind is prohibited in identified areas throughout the California Desert District. Controlled flame devices such as portable stoves fueled by petroleum or LPG products are allowed only by permit. Smoking is only permitted within enclosed vehicles or camp trailers. Please check with local field offices for area restrictions. 

Information Contact:
BLM El Centro Field Office
1661 South 4th Street
El Centro, CA  92243
(760) 337-4400

Weather Conditions

CDD Final Interim Supplementary Rules

In case of an Emergency:
Dial 911 


  • From Interstate 8, take the Boulevard exit.
  • Proceed south to the stop sign at Old Highway 80.
  • Turn east (left) on Old Highway 80.
  • At approximately two miles, turn north (left) on McCain Valley Road.
  • Continue on McCain Valley Road for approximately four miles.