How to Camp Near Joshua Tree National Park

Four Methods:Inside the ParkBLM Land Near Joshua Tree TownBLM Land Near Cottonwood SpringJoshua Tree Climber's Ranch

Joshua Tree National Park is a beautiful spot for camping, rock climbing, wildflower viewing and exploring the high desert ecosystem. As the park is only a few hours drive from Los Angeles, California, the official Park Service campgrounds frequently fill up. This page will attempt to document some of the difficult to find, but free camping options available outside of the park's boundaries as well as listing the pay options in the park itself.

Method 1
Inside the Park

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    Know that inside Joshua Tree National Park, there are 9 different campgrounds.
    • The campsites include Belle, Black Rock, Cottonwood, Hidden Valley, Indian Cove, Jumbo Rocks, Ryan, Sheep Pass and White Tank.
    • Each site charges a fee of $10 - $15 per night and will accommodate a maximum of 2 cars and 6 people per site.
    • All of these sites will fill up on peak weekends in the park during busy season. Some sites can be reserved in advance from the Park Service by visiting recreation.gov .

Method 2
BLM Land Near Joshua Tree Town

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    Recognize that the Bureau of Land Management has specifically a dry, vegetationless patch of land near Copper Mountain College for camping and other uses. The dirt roads to the location are well maintained and easily navigable in an RV. The area is popular with dune buggies, dirt bikers, and firework fanatics so it may not guarantee you a quiet night of sleep.
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    Get there:
    • Start from the Valero station at the intersection of Park Blvd and Highway 62 and drive 3.7 miles (6.0 km) east on Highway 62.
    • Turn left (north) on Sunfair road and travel about 2 miles (3.2 km) to Broadway.
    • Turn right on Broadway and drive about 1 mile (1.6 km) till you see a street with a line of telephone poles running perpendicular to Broadway. This one lane dirt road is Cascade.
    • Turn left (north) on Cascade for about .5 miles (0.80 km). You will pass a single lane, unmarked dirt road named Sunflower.
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    Camp anywhere after Sunflower but before Mesa Drive. Set up camp at least 300 feet (91.4 m) away from the road.
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    Recognize that fires are not permitted and all vegetation living and dead is protected[1].
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    Pack your own trash and waste in and out of the site. No trash, water or bathroom facilities are provided.

Method 3
BLM Land Near Cottonwood Spring

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    Get there:
    • Drive six miles south of Cottonwood Visitor Center;
    • Pass the park boundary sign and, just beyond the aqueduct,
    • Turn right or left on the water district road.
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    Camp in any of the allowable spots which include:
    • Camping is allowed west of the cottonwood road, south of the water district road, and north of Interstate 10.
    • Camping is also allowed east of the cottonwood road and adjacent to the south side of the water district road.
    • Camping is also allowed south of Interstate 10, on both the east and west sides of Box Canyon Road.

Method 4
Joshua Tree Climber's Ranch

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    Know that a primitive campground known as "The Pit" is available for members of the American Alpine Club or the JT Climber's Association. It is located in the town of Joshua Tree.[2]

Article Info

Categories: Camping