Explore the most popular off road driving trails in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

3 days ago

the slot trail was easy and down a dirt road so passing in a car is impossible, there is another dirt road path that starts on the other side of the slots. We encountered a few other groups in the slots but only 2 once out of them. the slots themselves are fun for the family and windcaves can be found about half a mile past that.

off road driving
11 days ago

Amazing view of the badlands at sunset! A guitarist playing and singing Eagle’s at the scene is definitely a bonus! Easy off road that you can’t get lost. No problem for first-time off roader with a Subaru’s outback!

It was a pretty good trail, don’t think I was allowed to do it on a dual sport but I did it anyway. The soft sand was ruff haha. I probably wouldn’t do it again because of my off road vehicle, but there is definitely beauty in desert scenery.

hiking
19 days ago

Wife and kids loved this place. Easy access

24 days ago

Awesome and easy. Kids loved it. Lots of shade for a hot day. I wish the trail that looped back over the butte was more clearly sign posted. We ended up just turning around and going back through the slot.

hiking
30 days ago

After finishing the Palm Canyon hike we drove over to the slot. The entrance from the highway is small and the road to the parking lot is sand packed one-way track with turn outs. We (3 adults and 3 kids (9-11 years old) did this easy hike and it was fantastic. Warning: there are some areas where it is more suited for slender body types and wearing a backpack (even a small one) can be a little tight. It's a nice short hike and pretty relaxed. We did this at the end of the day and by the time we came up we caught the sunset

hiking
1 month ago

nice caves and canyons. However, long washboard trail was punishing.

on Fonts Point

off road driving
1 month ago

3-10-18
I do recommend if you are in the area & have time you want to visit.
https://goo.gl/maps/6sSSoEX9fjT2
unofficial trail head.
I have used the longer of the two trails.
Trails were good, but I wouldn't use a passenger car. I found areas that had some deeper loose sand that would stop a car, & 1 or 2 areas that would need a higher clearance vehicle. A stock 4wd works fine.
The views are great & found some nice photo opportunities.
The activity level was steady flow of around 20-30 people.
The area is clean thanks to all who visit that are respectful of our outdoor points of interest.
I did not see any restroom or porta potties so plan ahead.
Have fun!
Thomas

Our group also hiked this one in February and the weather was perfect. We started at the parking area and walked the Jeep trail (some in the party did not like this part) but once we reached the Slot canyon everyone was pleased. I myself find beauty in most hikes and this one was no different. There are some great views at the start of an open desert, then you hike on the Jeep Trail for a bit with above canyon views and drop in at the end. Very nice.

hiking
1 month ago

Walked the Slot in February and found it to by a nice hike with interesting scenery in the canyon with narrow as well as wide walled areas. We did not know it looped and did not have our AllTrails app so our hike was short, but it was nice. I wore a pack on this one, and some spots can be tight to squeeze through with a pack.

hiking
1 month ago

Great little trail. Getting in at the trail head might be tough for those that require a cane to walk, it gets pretty skinny at times but awesome fun. The trail can go much farther than is listed if you want to.

Pay attention to trail markers so you don’t miss your exits.

off road driving
1 month ago

Completed this trail 02/24/2018 Via a 2004 Toyota Landcruiser with 32 inch tires no lift only side steps removed .starting in the Julian area and ended at the S2 . Trail has an unlocked gate might need 2 people 1 to hols the gate one to drive threw it . Trail is not difficult starting in Julian it can be completed in 4 high . There js a side trail approx 200 feet up a steep rutted hill at
33.047086 , 116.539230 . This trailed must be completed in 4lo and what ever traction aids your vehicle has turned on . I did manage to 3 wheel up the side trail and down the side trail with no damage. After completing this , the trail is uneven hardpack for a couple miles then you start and decent traveling next to a cliffside with baseball size rocks there is a squeeze at one section with only a couple inches between the Landcruiser and rocks . A couple of microwave size rocks need careful tire placement. And a Sharp turn with some rock stacking from previous adventurers . Hit the valley floor and about 15 minutes your out .

I recommend this trail for stock vehicles equipped with 4 Low and about 9 inches of ground clearance. Trail is more interesting heading up the trail from the s2 in Anza ending in Julian . There is a few side trails which can test your courage and rig . Good luck.

off road driving
1 month ago

Really fun trail. First few miles are pretty open and fast paced. At about 7-8 mikes in you come to a steep very rocky uphill climb. Lots of big loose rocks. High clearance a must. I put it in 4L to make it easier. After that it opens up again and leads you out to the valley and continues on to the rest of Coyote Canyon. There were 2 water crossings. Not too deep

hiking
2 months ago

We did it! Despite my son being convinced we were going to die in the desert (eye roll). He's 11 and dramatic. My 8-year-old girl loved it. The walked through the slot until it opened up and then turned back to go through it again.

I highly recommend stopping by the Anza Borrego State Park Visitor's center to get more information on the area and peace of mind when checking on the road and wash conditions, especially if you aren't driving a 4WD.

This is a short hike, a few steps down over rocks. I did see Seniors (one 80+) doing the trail. People of all ages, shapes, and sizes were hiking this trail seemingly without a problem. The only hindrance would be if you needed a cane or something to assist with walking. Otherwise, you're good to go. Bring water, as always. But this was SO awesome because a lot of it was in the shade and there was a nice breeze.

off road driving
2 months ago

This is a nice intermediate trail for off-roading. A stock height vehicle may have trouble in a few spots due to large rocks and ruts in the trail, but we went through in a Jeep Wrangler with a 2.5' lift and 33' tires with no sweat. a few fun climbs, and close enough to a ledge to give an inexperienced passenger white knuckles. Fun little trail with cool slot canyons for hiking. I drove my Jeep into one of the slot trails and surprised my buddies waiting in their rigs when I drove out forward. :)
Once at the turn around sot near the mining ID sign there is a short hike up a hill to expose a great view of the Salton Sea.

hiking
2 months ago

Certainly a must see..short but spectacular hike! This is a good one for kids/family in my opinion. Trail head can be difficult to find.

off road driving
2 months ago

It's a fun little easy drive. Done it a couple of times in the summer and the shade was appreciated.

hiking
2 months ago

Did this in the middle of July when it was close to 110 and still had fun. Moderately difficult hike accounting for the fact that there was 1.5 gallons of water and a lot of food supply shoved into a non-hiking backpack. The hike up the truck road was steep with very little shade. Entering the actual trail in the open space of the entrance canyon was fantastic. A turn at a fork in the road lead to a slot canyon, very fun. Afterwards, a trail leading to the calcite mine showed impressive views of the surrounding area. Atop the calcite mine hill were gorgeous views of the Salton Sea and other well known landmarks that evade my memory at this current time. The actual mines were not to be found on that particular day. However, a huge geologic formation known as locomotive rock jets out of the ground like a monolith, climbing it would be rewarding if one ever gets the chance. All in all, it felt like 3 trails in one, a great show of Anza's natural desert wonders. Do as I say, not as I do. Summer is a season only folks with brain deficiencies or a serious lack of common sense and logic would choose when it comes to exploring a desert.

off road driving
2 months ago

An awesome drive. You can drive even further to the bottom of Heart Attack Hill or up to Dave Clark Dry Spring. It's about an hour and a half drive one way once you get onto the dirt. That's assuming you are driving at a speed that's leaving a cloud of dust for all the other campers to enjoy. Tons of options for camping sites.

off road driving
3 months ago

3 months ago

Stunning! So much better than I thought it would be! Glad there weren't many people when I hiked it because some spaces get tight. Not sure why the description here says it's un maintained. It looked very well maintained when we hiked it.

off road driving
3 months ago

You can’t go all the way from S2 near Butterfield (at box canyon) to S1 (sunrise highway) with a vehicle, but you can cut across at Chariot Canyon to Banner Grade (Hwy 78). Its a tough trek unless you have the right equipment. I’ve reviewed this already as Oriflamme Canyon trail. Check it out for recommendations. Also passable via Rodriguez Canyon if you want to rock crawl (for you Jeeper creepers). Again, go prepared. Awesome adventure. Oriflamme Canyon and the Mason Valley Truck Trail are worth exploring. The entire trek is hike-ready. It is not truly closed altogether if you are on foot. The PCT crosses this trail too.

mountain biking
3 months ago

Camped in Little Blair valley on the east side of the trail. Several primitive campsites encircle the valley, which gets filled with wildflowers in the spring. Biked the entire route with a buddy; great ride, strenuous at times and some soft sandy sections, but great scenery. Hiked up the indian trail at the southeast end of the loop the next day, its about 3 miles in and back from the trailhead. There are several morteros and Native American petroglyphs on the large rocks in the valley. Heading back it started to rain pretty good, be careful getting out, there are some muddy bits of track on the Big Blair (west loop) side of the range.

hiking
3 months ago

One of the best examples of native “rock art” in the region. Easy to access and a pleasant nature hike overall. Bring the kids. Wash is stable most of the year. Still best to bring a 4x4.

off road driving
3 months ago

I have taken this path (The Mason Valley Truck Trail) twice now. Once from the 78 at Banner Grade down to the S2 at Box Canyon and once in the opposite direction from S2 up to 78. Took my LR4 going up and my 4Runner coming down. It was a tough trip going both ways. But also really fun and quite beautiful. Oriflamme has an amazing history. Look it up before you go. The path is rocky and a very rough trip for anyone without experience. I recommend having a spotter/co-pilot on board too - like you would climbing rocks. My most recent trip was in October of 2017. The rains have caused major erosion since my first trip. I would rate it medium to hard because of the tight spaces, shear drops and loose surfaces. Only true off-road “overland” vehicles with a narrow footprint and shorter wheelbase will fit. Ample clearance is important too. No full-size trucks or large SUVs. You’ll risk major damage. Very few places to turn back once you get started. Also note, the big metal gate up at Banner isn’t really locked.

hiking
3 months ago

Awesome kid friendly hike. Unique and easy for all skill levels. Kids will love it.

off road driving
3 months ago

Great way to spend a few hours putting around. We did this no problem in a stock Jeep. There was a lot of traffic on the trail but pretty easy to take turns passing on the trail. We explored both forks at the end of the trail sheep canyon and middle willows. Middle willows was a lot more rocky but fun! Looks like a great camp sight.

off road driving
3 months ago

This was a fun trail done in a Jeep. Trail was done mostly in 2wd. Will definitely head back in the spring the flower should be cool out here.

Dusty but lots of fun. Very worth going. Can’t wait to go back. You can also camp there.

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