Palm Springs-South Coast Field Office

Coon Hollow Camp Site at Mule Mountains Long Term Visitor Area 
 

Area Description

Located in the lower Colorado Desert in eastern Riverside County, the Mule Mountains Long Term Visitor Area consists of the Wiley's Well and Coon Hollow camp sites, and the surrounding desert area where dispersed camping is allowed.  The Coon Hollow camp sites are located adjacent to a desert riparian wash populated by palo verde, smoke tree, mesquite and ironwood trees.

 Typical camp site at Coon Hollow
 View of Thumb Rock from a Coon Hollow camp site.
 Typical camp site at Coon Hollow.
View of Thumb Rock from a camp site at Coon Hollow.

 

 

Amenities

  • 29 trailer sites with tables, BBQ stands and campfire rings (pack in your own fire wood -- no wood collecting in the desert); 6 with cabanas
  • 3 vault toilets
  • garbage collection
  • ranger patrols
  • no electricity
  • no water

 

Activities

There is easy 4WD access to nearby rock-hounding sites such as the Hauser Geode Beds and Opal Hill Fire Agate Mine.  The historic Bradshaw Trail National Scenic Byway passes between the two campgrounds and provides access to numerous trails, gem and mineral collection sites and historic stage route and mining areas.

 

How to get there

The Mule Mountain LTVA, with the Coon Hollow and Wiley's Well camp sites, is located approximately 17 miles west of Blythe, or 100 miles east from Palm Springs.

Take I-10 (eastbound if you are traveling from Palm Springs; westbound if you are traveling from Blythe) to the Wiley’s Well Road (Exit 222) and head south for 3 miles.  The paved road ends here and turns right to provide access to two state prisons, Chuckwalla Valley and Ironwood; however, visitors to the LTVA need to continue south on Wiley’s Well Road, which is the graded dirt road to the left. Take the graded road 6 miles south to the Wiley's Well camp site, or travel an additional 3 miles south to the Coon Hollow camp site.

The dirt section of the road is maintained by the County of Riverside's Department of Transportation, and is usually drivable year-round, but can develop a washboard surface late in the season or may have rough spots after a storm.

 

Nearest Gas Stations and Public Telephones

The nearest facilities are located in Blythe, which is approximately 7 miles north and 10 miles east of the Mule Mountain LTVA; and Chiriaco Summit, which is located approximately 45 miles northwest of the Mule Mountain LTVA.

 

Safety

Although these campsites are open year-round, it is best to visit during fall and spring months.  Temperature extremes are a well-known desert hazard.  Always inform someone as to where you are going, your route of travel, and when you expect to return; and carry at least one gallon of water per person per day on your trip.

 

Campground Rules

Long Term camping trailers and motor homes must be 100% self-contained for waste and gray water.

Short term camping without self-containment is only allowed within the Coon Hollow or Wiley's Well camp sites but not in the dispersed areas.

A Special Recreation Permit is required September 15th – April 15th.  Camping is allowed in the LTVA in the 'off' season between April 16th – September 14th at no cost, but the standard 14-day limit for dispersed camping on BLM land applies.  There is no Camp Host on site during the 'off' season.

The speed limit in an LTVA is 15 mph unless posted otherwise.

Do not collect wood, even downed wood, in the desert for your campfires or any other purposes; please leave it in place, as it provides necessary habitat for desert wildlife.

 

Permits

LTVA permits are 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.  

Interagency Annual / Access/ Senior Passport discounts do not apply.

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

 

Bureau of Land Management
Palm Springs - South Coast Field Office
1201 Bird Center Drive
Palm Springs, California 92262
Phone: (760) 833-7100
Fax: (760) 833-7199
Office Hours: 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., M-F
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