Explore the most popular trails in El Paso Mountains Wilderness with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

The El Paso Mountains drop into this Wilderness from the southeast, with Black Mountain, at 5,244 feet, serving as the highest point. From the foot of Black Mountain, the terrain sinks into the Black Hills and gives rise to numerous dark volcanic mesas and reddish buttes dissected by narrow canyons--in short, badlands topography. Most human visitors are attracted to an abundance of cultural sites, and the southern portion of the area is included in the Last Chance Archaeological District. Some of the oldest nonmarine fossils ever found in the West were discovered here: ancient camel-like and horse-like animals. Rock hounds also find much to their interest, interrupting their hunt to peer at the occasional desert tortoise, Mojave ground squirrel, or raptor wandering by. Creosote bushes, the most ubiquitous desert plant in the United States, reign supreme over much of the region, while Joshua trees cling to the western side of Black Mountain.

The trail was hard to find and follow. Had to take a bumpy dirt road to get to the trailhead.

An easy to drive to location. Park by the radio towers then follow the foot path to the peak. A small steep section on the first climb then once on the actual peak the views of the blooming flowers could be seen for miles.

El Paso Mtns Wilderness, no vehicles allowed, good hiking area, easy to get to by car, then hiking is all off trail, no marked hiking or foot trails, area is free of trash.

Fri Jan 20 2006

Trails.com has been informed that the Bonanza Gulch trail cabins are on private property. The mining claims in this area are active and vandalism and removal of valuable minerals without the owners permission is a felony which the Kern County Sheriff likes to prosecute. Anyone may visit the cabin and sign in if they respect the place, put trash in the can provided, and leave it as they found it. Surviellance cameras are currently being placed for the prosecution of vandals.

ohv/off road driving
Sat Dec 30 2017