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Open Year-round
Yes
Reservations possible?
No
RV Hookups
No
Potable water
No
Please respect the outdoors and leave no trace. One tip how to dispose of waste properly: Pack out toilet paper and hygiene products. For more information, visit https://lnt.org/learn/7-principles

Culp Valley Primitive Campground is one of the eight undeveloped campgrounds in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. The only amenities to be had are vault toilets and metal containers for campfires (ground fires are strictly prohibited). Campsites are not marked or numbered, thus visitors may set up camp nearly anywhere. Although vehicles must remain on the dirt road or in existing campsites, visitors are welcome to park and set up camp elsewhere as long as it doesn’t disturb vegetation. Moreover, there is no trash collection in Culp Valley so everything packed in must be packed out.

That said, Culp Valley is one of the best stargazing locations in all of southern California. Anza-Borrego Desert State Park has been certified as an International Dark Sky Park. Between the dry air, its secluded location, and the mountain peaks blocking out light pollution, Culp Valley is idyllic for stargazing and astrophotography.

Culp Valley Primitive Campground also features many hiking and bouldering opportunities. Culp Valley Trail and Peña Springs Trail are both short hikes that begin at the campground. Hikers may opt for the slightly longer Culp Valley Loop that connects Peña Springs, Culp Valley Trail, and a scenic overlook.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter
Spring
Fall

Congestion

Occasionally full

Parking Pass

None

Price per night (basic site)

0.00 $ (0.00 €)

Pros

Large campsites. Great Stargazing Location. Free.

Cons

Often Windy. Extreme Summer Temperatures.

Pets allowed

Yes, with restrictions

Managed by

California Department of Parks and Recreation

Address

Co Hwy S22
Ranchita, CA 92066
United States

Features

Vault toilet
Big vistas
Wildlife
Wildflowers
Family friendly
Bird watching

Access

Vehicle

Total number of sites

25

Maximum trailer length

35.00 ft (10.67 m)

Location

Field Guide

Nearby Adventures

Nearby Lodging + Camping

Western Sonoran + Colorado Desert, California
Santa Rosa + San Jacinto National Monument

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