Picacho Peak Wilderness Area is a located on nearly 9000 acres of desert land just east of the California State Line. The wilderness area offers some good dispersed camping opportunities and solitude among the washes, basins, and peaks of the Chocolate Mountains.

Dispersed camping is permitted anywhere within the wilderness area boundaries, however, motorized vehicles must stay on existing roads. Picacho Peak Wilderness Area should not be confused with Little Picacho Wilderness Area or Picacho State Recreation Area, both of which are located to the southeast, or Picacho Peak State Park in Arizona.

You will find many different types of wildlife within the wilderness area, including burros, bighorn sheep, and the large desert tortoise.

Access to camping supplies is limited due to the remote location of Picacho Peak Wilderness Area. Ground fires are permitted, but it is recommended that you bring a portable fire pit or ring.

Picacho Peak Wilderness Area Camping Features

Campground Type: Dispersed
Number of Campsites: Not Defined
Cost: No Cost
Use Level: Low
Dogs Allowed: Yes
Fire Rings: None – Bring a portable fire ring
Drinking Water: None
Toilets: None
Showers: None
Trash/Dumpsters: None – Pack it out
Hiking Access: Yes
Beach/Lake Access: None
RV/Trailer Length: None
RV/Trailer Amenities: None
Cell Phone Service: None
Wifi: None
Operating Season: Picacho Peak Wilderness area is open year-round

Getting There

Geo Coordinates: 33.012422 , -114.728506
Nearest City/Town: Yuma, Arizona
Elevation: 200 Feet
Location: Imperial County, California
Paved Road Access: None
Proximity to Stores: 40 miles to Yuma, AZ
Directions: You can access Picacho Peak Wilderness Area from Ogilby Road (S-24), which runs between Interstate 8 and State Highway 78. Indian Pass Road runs east from Ogilby Road to Picacho State Recreation Area boundary. The wilderness area is on the south side of Gavilan Wash. The south boundary of the wilderness area runs along Hyduke Road and is accessible from either Ogilby Road or Picacho State Park Road.



Phone: (760) 337-4400
Web: Bureau of Land Management
Reservations: Not Accepted – First-come, First-served

When To Go

Spring, Early/Late Summer, and Fall (and possibly Winter too) – You can camp here pretty much year-round, expect mid-summer when the temperatures exceed 100 degrees daily.

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What To Do

Hiking – The area around Picacho Peak Wilderness is surrounded by hills and mountains with hiking trails


Image Credits: California State Parks

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Justin is an IT Professional, focused on cloud, mobile, and infrastructure management and security with his consulting business, as well as chief bottle washer for this website. In addition to NextCampsite.com, Justin also runs and writes for the technology infrastructure-focused blog OddJobsInTech.com, and the mobile device-focused blog EnterpriseMobileDevice.com.


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