El Centro Field Office

Target shooterTarget Shooting

Target shooting is allowed on lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), El Centro Field Office, as long as such activity is permitted by federal, state and local laws. All federal, state, and county regulations apply to public lands.  It is the responsibility of the shooter to know the laws.  View maps.

Paper target

Seasonal Fire Restrictions Affect Target Shooting

 Find out if your favorite target shooting location has fire restrictions! (Scroll to maps located under related links.)

Things to consider:

when selecting a location...

  • Proper access to public lands must be through public roads.  Crossing private lands to access public lands is not permitted unless you first obtain permission from the private landowner.
  • Check with local sheriff or land management agencies before using an area for shooting. Private and state lands are located adjacent to many public lands. Do not shoot on private lands without the owner's permission.  Shooting is not permitted in state parks.
  • Find a safe backdrop.  Shots fired across the open desert can travel for more than a mile. A spot with a large mound directly behind the target is ideal.
  • Firearms must not be discharged within 150 yards of residences, buildings, campsites, occupied areas, recreational areas or domestic livestock.
  • Shooting across a road, trail, or wash is not permitted.
  • Shooting should only take place in areas well away from other concentrations of people and property.
  • Shooting from a vehicle is not permitted.
  • Avoid sensitive wildlife habitats.
  • Stay on designated routes.  Cross-country travel is not permitted outside of OHV open area boundaries.

on location...

  • Shoot only retrievable, freestanding targets. 
  • Shooting glass objects, electronic waste and items that may contain hazardous materials (i.e. freon, propane, etc.) is prohibited.
  • Do not attach targets to living plants or place targets up against rocks, plants, or solid objects.  It is illegal to deface or destroy trees, signs, outbuildings, or other objects on federal lands that are for the public's enjoyment. CFR 8365.1-5 (a) (1) & (2).
  • Always pick up and remove targets, empty shells, and any other debris after you have finished. 
Areas closed to target shooting:

Due to high fire danger, wildlife management, safety concerns, and litter problems, several areas managed by the El Centro Field Office are closed to target shooting. These areas include:

  • Airport Mesa, Jacumba (CFR 8365.1-6)
  • Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area
  • McCain Valley
  • Table Mountain
  • Jacumba Ouststanding Natural Area (CFR 8365.1-6)

The maps below display BLM administered lands in a general area.  The maps do not display specific shooting sites.  All federal, state and local regulations apply on public lands.

Desert Access Guides (DAGs) may also be purchased from the field office.  DAGs are 1:100,000  scale maps (one centimeter on map equals one kilometer on ground).   Each map shows color-coded public and private land ownership, roads, water features, points of interest and some topographic information. DAGs cost $4 each.  A map index can be viewed at http://www.blm.gov/ca/st/en/info/iac/Northern_Map.html

BLM Lands in Imperial County
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 Plaster City
 Superstition Mountain
 West Mesa



Imperial County Resources

 Code of Ordinances - Weapons
 Sheriff's Department
 Shooting Ranges

BLM Lands in San Diego County
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San Diego County Resources

 Cleveland National Forest
 Code of Regulatory Ordinances - Shooting Regulations
 Sheriff's Department FAQs
 Sheriff's Department Shooting Map
 Shooting Ranges

Many assault-type weapons are banned in the State of California. For information on California firearms laws and policies, please visit the Firearms Division, California Department of Justice web site.

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