Needles Field Office

Trilobite Wilderness

Trilobite ground view, of mountains in the background with green vegetation.
Trilobite Wilderness

Location: Trilobite Wilderness is located in San Bernardino County, California approximately 60 miles west of Needles, CA in between I-40 and historic Route 66. Maps of the area can be obtained from the Bureau of Land Management Field Office in Needles, California.

Trilobite locationArea Description: 37,308 acres. Trilobite Wilderness covers the Marble Mountains, a narrow volcanic range extending 12 miles in a northwest-southwest direction. Alternating dark brown and light brown striations have been tilted by geologic processes and give a marbled appearance to the range. Through the center, several yellowish sandstone peaks with long talus slopes are prominent. Trending eastward from the mountain range, the wilderness includes low rolling hills and sloping bajadas. Vegetation is characteristic of the lower Mojave Desert, consisting of creosote bush scrub and desert wash scrub. Wildlife is also typical for the Mojave Desert; including coyote, black-tailed jackrabbits, ground squirrels, kangaroo rats, quail, roadrunners, red tail hawks, prairie falcons, rattlesnakes, and several species of lizards. The area does have a very stable permanent population of bighorn sheep last estimated at around 150, and the eastern portion of the wilderness provides critical habitat for the threatened desert tortoise.

Getting There: Access this wilderness by traveling 28 miles east of Ludlow on Interstate 40, and take the Kelbaker Road exit. Travel south I mile, where the road intersects a pipeline. Turn east and follow the pipeline road for approximately one mile. The pipeline right-of-way forms the northern boundary of the wilderness for the next I I miles. Four-wheel drive vehicles are recommended.

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.

Trilobite Wilderness


Legal Description


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Contact Us

Bureau of Land Management
Needles Field Office
1303 S Highway 95
Needles, CA 92363
Phone: (760) 326-7000
Fax: (760) 326-7099
Office Hours: 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., M-F
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