dawn 'til dusk (in the day use area of the developed campgrounds)
Visitor Center Hours: Daily 9am to 5pm.
The Visitor Center will be closed the morning of May 1, so that staff and volunteers can attend the memorial service for Ranger Steve Bier. The Visitor Center will be open 1-5 pm on that day.
Parking at Borrego Palm Canyon is limited. Vehicles will be restricted to occupying one parking space. There will be limited parking for oversized vehicle at the Visitor Center 2nd parking lot. People with RVs, trailers, and other oversized vehicles are encouraged to plan for limited parking. Day use parking in campground areas is $10.
USE CAUTION ON DIRT ROADS
Many dirt roads in the park experienced flooding last month. Road conditions are variable; most roads require four-wheel-drive and many require high clearance as well. Be aware that after rains, mud can be very sticky and can trap even four-wheel drive vehicles; do not drive into mud puddles! Check road conditions (last updated 2/10/17).
MORE RAIN IS FORECAST FOR THE COMING WEEKEND, WHICH MEANS THAT ROADS ARE LIKELY TO BECOME EVEN MORE MUDDY, SLICK, AND STICKY. VISITORS ARE ADVISED TO USE EXTREME CAUTION WHEN TRAVELING DIRT ROADS IN THE PARK, EVEN WITH FOUR-WHEEL-DRIVE VEHICLES!
Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is the largest state park in California. Five hundred miles of dirt roads, 12 wilderness areas and many miles of hiking trails provide visitors with an unparalleled opportunity to experience the wonders of the California Desert. The park is named for Spanish explorer Juan Bautista de Anza and the Spanish word borrego, or bighorn sheep. The park features washes, wildflowers, palm groves, cacti and sweeping vistas. Visitors may also have the chance to see roadrunners, golden eagles, kit foxes, mule deer and bighorn sheep as well as iguanas, chuckwallas and the red diamond rattlesnake. Listening devices for the hearing impaired are available in the visitor center.
The Park is located on the eastern side of San Diego County, with portions extending east into Imperial County and north into Riverside County. It is about a two-hour drive from San Diego, Riverside, and Palm Springs.
Many visitors approach from the east or west via Highways S22 and 78. From the coast, these highways descend from the heights of the Peninsular range of mountains with spectacular views of the great bowl of the Colorado Desert. Highway S2 enters the park from the south off of Interstate 8.
Most visitors approach from the east via Highways S22, S2, or 78. Visitors from San Diego via Highways 79 and 78 have the added pleasure of driving through the mountainous Cuyamaca Rancho State Park--quite a different experience from Anza-Borrego. The highways from the east climb to 2,400 feet or so and then descend about 2,000 feet to the valley. Where the highway breaks out of the high-country vegetation, it reveals the great bowl of the Anza-Borrego desert. The valley spreads below, and there are mountains all around. The highest are to the north--the Santa Rosa Mountains. The mountains are a wilderness, with no paved roads in or out or through. They have the only all-year-flowing watercourse in the park. They are the home of the peninsular bighorn sheep, often called desert bighorn. Few park visitors ever see them; the sheep are justly wary. A patient few observers each year see and count them, to learn how this endangered species is coping with human encroachment.
Borrego Springs is a Dark Sky Community, providing outstanding opportunities for exploring the star filled night sky.