Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Elevation Gain
2,112.00 ft (643.74 m)
Trail type
17.20 mi (27.68 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Located within Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, the Split Rock Petroglyphs trail is a captivating 17.2-mile out-and-back journey that follows the Pinyon Wash Trail through Pinyon Canyon.

These petroglyphs, found near a large boulder known as Split Rock, represent a significant historical and cultural site. Created by the Native American cultures that once inhabited the area, the petroglyphs showcase a variety of designs, including geometric patterns, animal figures, and possible human representations. While the exact age of these petroglyphs isn't precisely known, estimates suggest they are several hundred to a few thousand years old, likely crafted by the ancestors of the Kumeyaay people.

The trail leading to the petroglyphs is a popular destination for hikers and enthusiasts of Native American history and rock art. Visitors are encouraged to view these ancient artworks with respect, avoiding any contact that could damage these delicate and irreplaceable cultural artifacts.

The experience of visiting the Split Rock Petroglyphs offers a unique opportunity to connect with the region's indigenous history and culture. Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is celebrated for its stunning landscapes, diverse wildlife, and fascinating geological features, making it an ideal destination for various outdoor activities.

As an International Dark Sky Park, Anza-Borrego provides excellent stargazing opportunities, with minimal light pollution ensuring clear views of the night sky.

Best Time to Hike
The trail is most comfortably hiked from late fall to early spring, as summer temperatures can be extreme due to the lack of shade.

Backcountry camping is permitted within the park, with a limit of 30 days per calendar year. Detailed rules and regulations can be found on the Anza-Borrego State Park Backcountry Camping website.

Additinal Information
For more details on the trail and park, visit the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park website.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass


Open Year-round



Historical Artifacts. Desert Scenery.


Lack of shade. Area is open to OHV traffic.

Trailhead Elevation

1,136.00 ft (346.25 m)

Highest point

3,133.00 ft (954.94 m)


Historically significant
Backcountry camping
Native artifacts

Typically multi-day


Permit required



Nearby Lodging + Camping


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