McCain Valley Lark Canyon

ORV Area and Campgrounds

Lark Canyon ORV Area & Campgrounds

Trail in Lark Canyon

The ORV Area is located 5.3 miles up McCain Valley Road on the left side. It contains approximately 30 miles of trails for use by motorcycles and ATVs less than 40 inches wide. Please remain on the established trail network. Cutting new trails or driving cross-country is prohibited. The Lark Canyon Campground adjoins the ORV Area.

Trail Map Lark Canyon


Lark Canyon Campground

Lark Canyon Campground is a year-round facility with 15 developed campsites. Fire rings, tables, water (not tested safe for drinking), and six vault toilets are found in the campground. Group camping sites are available. The majority of visits occur in the late spring, summer, and fall. Occasionally, special events such as motorcycle trails events will take place in the OHV area. Spectators are welcome, but please obey all special event signs.

A $6.00 per campsite fee is required for camping at all BLM campsites. All sites are available on a first come first served basis. Camping is limited to 14 days within a 28 day period. Except for backpacking, all camping in McCain Valley must be in a designated campsite. Please bring your own firewood, as firewood is scarce. A campfire permit may be required. Contact the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection for regulations.

Cottonwood Campground

  • 30 individual sites for tent or RV camping
  • Table, fire rings, vault toilets. No Water
  • There is a user fee

Located on McCain Valley Road (about 7 miles north of Lark Canyon, described above).

Rules for the McCain Valley Resource Conservation Area

The rules for this area have been established for your safety, as well as for the protection of wildlife, natural and cultural resources, private property, and other visitors.

Vehicle camping is permitted only in Lark Canyon and Cottonwood Campgrounds. Developed campground quiet hours are from 9:00 PM to 8:00 AM.

Campground Rules

  1. Camp only in numbered camping units.
  2. No more than two vehicles per camping unit are permitted.
  3. Camping is limited to a maximum of 14 days.
  4. Check-out time is 2:00 PM
  5. Enter and leave the campground only on the marked campground access road.
  6. No vehicle play is permitted within the campground boundary.

Off-Highway vehicle use is prohibited unless an area is specifically posted open for vehicle use. The removal of off-road vehicle signs or driving in unauthorized areas is punishable by imprisonment of up to 12 months and/or a fine of up to $1,000. Maximum speed limit on established roads or trails is 30 mph, or lower where posted. The maximum speed limit in campgrounds is 10 mph.

Wildfires endanger wildlife, watershed resources and visitors. Be careful with stoves and barbecues. Confine campfires to established campground fire pits. During times of high fire danger, all campfires may be prohibited.

Watering holes in the area provide water supplies essential for wildlife and livestock. Please do not camp, picnic, or occupy lands within 1,500 feet of any posted livestock watering facility or 600 feet of any wildlife watering hole.

Lark Canyon sign


Please remember the following when riding in the Lark Canyon OHV Area:

  • All OHVs must be currently registered for street or off-road use.
  • Lark Canyon OHV Area is open to OHVs less than 40 inches wide
  • OHV use in the wash and on the wash bank next to the campground is prohibited.
  • Only street legal vehicles are allowed on McCain Valley Road
  • Spark arresters are required on all OHVs
  • OHVs are not allowed in Cottonwood Campground
  • Target shooting and the use of fireworks is prohibited.


Source: BLM and DesertUSA Staff

More on Area

San Diego and Arizona Railroad: "The Impossible Railroad"
The Buffalo Soldiers: "Where They Went Peace and Civilization followed.
McCain Valley Resource Conservation Area


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