• Kelso Mountain

    Mojave

    National Preserve California

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  • Portable toilets at Kelso Depot Visitor Center

    The water system at Kelso is shut down due to problems with the storage tank. Portable toilets are available; bottled water is available for purchase. Campers note-you won't be able to fill water bottles at Kelso until the system is repaired.

  • Telephone at Kelso Depot is not working

    Kelso Depot Visitor Center telephone, 760 252-6108, is not working. For information on weekdays, call 760 252-6100. On Saturday, try calling 760 252-6104.

  • Kelso Depot Visitor Center hours

    Kelso Depot Visitor Center is open Fridays through Tuesdays from 9 am to 5 pm, closed Wednesdays and Thursdays. The Beanery Lunch Counter is closed.

Springs & Seeps: Colton Well (1:24,000)

Cave Spring (overhand/grotto) & (trough)
MOJA Spring ID:
COWE1(T)
General Location: Near Hole-in-the-Wall
Elevation:
1140 m
History: NA
Hydrogeology:
NA
Type of spring:
Qanat
Vegetation: NA
Animal Use:
Red-spotted toads, mourning doves, burros, cattle
Aquatic biota: NA
Ephemeral:
No
Discharge:
0.05 gpm
Water quality: DO: 62.3 %, pH: 7.46, Conductivity: 345 (µS/cm) TDS: 166 mg/l, Salinity: 0.2 (0/00)
Site Condition: highly disturbed
Type of disturbance:
livestock/diversion (trough), burros
Type of infrastructure/diversion: Natural-looking qanat. The opening is hidden by Mimulus below a mossy seep at the north end of the large channel in which the trough sits. The grotto is adjacent to a large overhanging rock.
Photos: Yes

Domingo Spring
MOJA Spring ID:
COWE2
General Location:
Beacher Canyon
Elevation:
1170 m
History: Historic water source for mining related activities in the mid to late 1800s.
Hydrogeology: NA
Type of spring:
Dry
Vegetation:
none
Animal Use:
NA
Aquatic biota:
none
Ephemeral:
at best
Discharge:
NA
Water quality:
NA
Site Condition:
highly disturbed
Type of disturbance:
water mining
Type of infrastructure/diversion:
Collapsed qanat.
Photos: Yes

Unnamed Spring #4
MOJA Spring ID:
COWE3
General Location:
Colton Hills
Elevation:
1215 m
History: NA
Hydrogeology:
NA
Type of spring:
Seep
Vegetation:
The site is vegetated by a lot of mesquite and some Baccharis. Acacia greggii, Prunus fasciculata in Opuntia/yucca/creosote mixed desert scrub surround the wetland vegetation.
Animals Use: NA
Aquatic biota:
NA
Ephemeral:
Yes
Discharge:
NA
Water quality:
NA
Site Condition:
undisturbed
Type of disturbance:
none
Type of infrastructure/diversion:
none
Photos:
Yes

Unnamed Spring #31
MOJA Spring ID: COWE5
General Location: Beecher Canyon
Elevation: 1195 m
History: The water source itself appears undisturbed. However, there has been a history of mining and grazing in the area surrounding the seep.
Hydrogeology: NA
Type of spring:
Seep
Vegetation:
Salix est. 30' tall, furrowed, gray bark, with Ericameria linear ifolia, Senecio flaccidus, moss.
Animal Use: None noted.
Aquatic biota: NA
Ephemeral:
no
Discharge: 0 l/m
Water quality: DO: 4.38 mg/l, pH: 8.5, Conductivity: 955 (µS/cm), TDS: 463 mg/l, Salinity: 0.5 (0/00)
Site Condition: undisturbed
Type of disturbance: none
Type of infrastructure/diversion: none
Photos: Yes

Whiskey Spring
MOJA Spring ID: COWE4
General Location:
Beecher Canyon (Colton Well)
Elevation: 1120 m
History: House spring for local ranchers since late 1800s. The spring received its current name because its water was used to make whiskey during prohibition. Legend has it that the spring water gave the whiskey a particularly good taste.
Hydrogeology:
Type of spring:
Qanat
Vegetation:
None
Animals using spring: None
Aquatic biota:
None
Ephemeral:
no
Discharge:
Unknown
Water quality:
Unknown
Site Condition:
Highly disturbed
Type of disturbance: Diversion
Type of infrastructure/diversion: The water is directly diverted using pipeline from a collapsed qanat. Other historic structural remnants, piping of various eras, cattle watering troughs as well as an abandoned game water site are present.
Photos: Yes

Did You Know?

photo of kelso dunes

At about 600 feet in height, Kelso Dunes in Mojave National Preserve are the third tallest in North America. When quantities of the sands move, they sometimes create a booming sound. Run down the slopes to try to make the dunes boom. More...