• Kelso Mountain


    National Preserve California

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  • Lower speed limits are temporarily in effect until road damage can be repaired

    The Superintendent has temporarily reduced the posted speed limit from 55 mph to 45 mph on all roads within the preserve as road crews work to repair damage from recent heavy rains. Call 760 252-6108 for more information.

  • Watch for storm damage on all roads

    Recent storms have caused flash flooding and damage to roads. Reduce speed and use caution when traveling through the park after storms. Call 760-252-6100 or 760-252-6108 for updates. Check our Current Conditions page for information on specific roads. More »

Mojave Wilderness

Mojave Wilderness: Kelso Dunes
Images of Mojave Wilderness: Kelso Dunes is one of the largest and most extensive sand dune fields in the United States.
NPS/Christine Schlegel

Mojave Wilderness: An Enduring Legacy
In 1994, with the passage of the California Desert Protection Act, Congress designated 695,200 acres of Mojave National Preserve-nearly half of all preserve lands-as wilderness. In Mojave Wilderness, natural processes are unrestrained, giving rise to the rich biodiversity so critical to the health of the global environment. A sample of the diverse landscapes of Mojave Wilderness includes:

  • The Zyzyx area and Soda Dry Lake-the vast, desiccated playa of a once great Ice Age lake;
  • Kelso Dunes and the sandblasted topography of Devils Playground;
  • Cinder Cones Lava Beds, home to at least 32 extinct volcanoes;
  • The broad, granitic Cima Dome and the world's largest and densest Joshua tree forest;
  • The limestone crags of Clark Mountain-the tallest mountain in the Mojave Desert-and an isolated white fir forest, remnant of the Pleistocene;
  • The biotic diversity, rugged topography, and stunning scenery of Piute Range and Granite, Providence, and New York Mountains.

Visitors will indeed find unparalleled opportunities for self-reliant, challenging recreational experiences. But the natural quiet, clear night skies and clean air of Mojave Wilderness also provide a refuge from fast-paced, developed society; a haven from increasing urbanization; a place to reconnect with oneself and with the land. The National Park Service invites you to experience Mojave Wilderness.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ) about Mojave Wilderness.


Did You Know?

photo of deer hunters

Park or preserve? Like other parks with the designation of "national preserve," Mojave National Preserve is managed under the same guidelines as national parks. The main difference is that hunting is allowed in national preserves, but not in national parks.