The BLM implements temporary closure in the Johnson Valley OHV Recreation Area in San Bernardino County

The temporary closure is necessary to protect participant and spectator safety during the 2021 King of the Hammers desert race event


Bureau of Land Management

BLM Office:

Barstow Field Office

Media Contact:

Michelle Van Der Linden
Off-Road Vehicle at King of the Hammers drives down a dusty path. Photo by Dave Christy, BLM.

BARSTOW, Calif. – The Bureau of Land Management will implement a temporary closure of public lands in the Johnson Valley Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Recreation Area in San Bernardino County Jan. 28 – Feb. 6.The temporary closure will help enhance public safety during the annual 2021 King of the Hammers desert race event, which is authorized by a BLM Special Recreation Permit. 

The San Bernardino County Public Health Department determined the COVID-19 safety measures that will be used during the event will comply with the State of California’s public health guidance and will help keep participants and patrons safe from infection.

A temporary closure of public lands in the Johnson Valley OHV Recreation Area is necessary to facilitate public safety and provide for an enhanced recreation experience for event participants and spectators. The public is reminded to cooperate with race officials and local law enforcement officers to help spectators and participants stay safe and ensure the success of the off-road races.

The temporary closure complies with the management plan for the area. A minimum of three staging areas within the Johnson Valley OHV Recreation Area will remain open to the public for both weekends of the temporary closure period. Registered race spectators, participants, and race officials are exempt from the closure. 

Information and a map of the closure area for the 2021 race event will be available for viewing at the BLM’s California Desert District Office and Barstow Field Office. Download a map of the closure.

The BLM encourages the public to recreate responsibly on public lands and to take precautions to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19. Stay local, plan ahead, practice safe social distancing and wear a mask when social distancing is not possible. Find additional tips for recreating responsibly on public lands.

As stewards, the BLM manages public lands for the benefit of current and future generations, supporting conservation in pursuit of its multiple-use mission. For more information, contact the California Desert District Office at (951) 697-5200, or the Barstow Field Office at (760) 252-6000.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.