Red Rock Canyon State
park is 25 miles northeast of Mojave on Highway 14,
near Cantil. Go west 1/4 mile on Abbott Drive. Signage indicating the turnoff is clearly visible on Highway
park is 120 miles north of Los Angeles, via
Interstate 5 and Highway 14.
Rock Canyon State Park
features scenic desert cliffs, buttes and
spectacular rock formations. The park is located
where the southernmost tip of the Sierra Nevada
converge with the El Paso Range. Each tributary
canyon is unique, with dramatic shapes and vivid
the area was once home to the Kawaiisu Indians, who
left petroglyphs in the El Paso mountains and other
evidence of their inhabitation. The spectacular gash situated at the western edge of the El
Paso mountain range was on the Native American trade
route for thousands of years.
the early 1870s, the colorful rock formations in the
park served as landmarks for 20-mule team freight
wagons that stopped for water. About 1850, it was
used by the footsore survivors of the famous Death
Valley trek including members of the Arcane and
Bennett families along with some of the Illinois
Jayhawkers. The park now protects significant paleontology sites and the
remains of 1890s-era mining operations, and has been
the site for a number of movies.
wet winters, the park's floral displays are
stunning. This winter was very dry so the wildflowers are more sparse
this year, but the beauty of the desert, combined
with the geologic features, make this park a
camper's favorite destination. Wildlife you may encounter includes roadrunners, hawks,
lizards, mice and squirrels.
camping (RVs, tents, trailers, vehicles) is allowed
anywhere within the park except Ricardo Campground. The
campground is tucked up against the base of dramatic
desert cliffs, with 50 primitive campsites, potable
water, pit toilets, fire rings, and tables. You must bring your own wood or purchase it from a ranger, and
there are no hook-ups or showers. A
maximum of 8 people is allowed per site (there are
no group sites).
is first-come, first served; there is no reservation
system. The campground can fill up on weekends in
the spring, especially if the weather is nice or on
holiday weekends, so arriving on a Thursday evening
or Friday morning is recommended.
is $12 per night per site, which includes parking
for one vehicle per site, or $10 per night with
seniors (62 years old or older). Additional vehicles are $5 each, which includes all OHV, 4x4,
and tow vehicles. There is a 30 foot maximum on RVs,
and a dump station is available for $5. Self-registration/payment is required before setting up camp
or parking. Vehicles
(including OHV) must be parked within the rock lined
areas provided at each campsite. No
horses or livestock allowed in the campground! Quiet
hours are 10 pm to 6 am; generators must be off from
8 pm to 10 am.
day-use parking area, open sunrise to sunset, is $5
per vehicle per day. Overnight
parking in the day-use lot is not permitted.
licensed vehicles (street legal and OHV with green
stickers) may travel on the primitive (dirt) road
system within the park. All
drivers of vehicles (street legal and OHVs) within
the park must be licensed, with the exception of
Cantil Wash and the frontage road south of Cantil
Wash, which are open to unlicensed operators of OHV
green sticker vehicles when accompanied by a parent
or guardian. Please watch for Closed Route signs and
check maps for open routes (please do not create new
and driving laws apply both on the paved and
primitive dirt roads.
(Max. Length) 30'
(Max. Length) 30'