Afton Canyon Campground, California

This unique canyon is one of the few places where the Mojave River flows above ground. A good stopping spot not far from the highway.


Afton Canyon - BLM Campground, near Ludlow, CA: Site #10 (22 RV sites total) - This site has: water nearby. Campground Notes: vault toilets • showers • no dump station available • river access • trails from campground• 2,800’ elevation. March 8th - 9rd. Miles driven = 203.
Overall Experience: neutral

Thermometer in Baker, CA

Afton Canyon Campground is a popular camping spot in the Mojave National Preserve, around 35 miles north of Barstow, California. It's a small but well-equipped campground that gives you access to a unique desert oasis and lots of outdoor activities.

A Hidden Gem in the Mojave Desert
The campground is located within Afton Canyon, also known as the "Little Grand Canyon of the Mojave Desert." Over thousands of years, the Mojave River carved out this beautiful canyon, and now it flows through the area, creating a stunning landscape.

Camping with a View
Afton Canyon Campground sits on the upper end of the canyon's western side, offering breathtaking views of the rugged desert scenery. It's operated by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and has 19 individual campsites.

Amenities for a Comfortable Stay
Each campsite at Afton Canyon Campground has everything you need for a pleasant stay:

  • Picnic table
  • Fire ring
  • Parking space

The campsites are nicely spaced out, providing some privacy. Some sites even have large trees providing shade. The campground also has potable water and vault toilets available for campers to use.

Exploring Nature's Playground
One of the main attractions of Afton Canyon Campground is its proximity to nature. Here are some activities you can enjoy during your visit:

  • Discovering the Mojave River
    The Mojave River flows all year round through Afton Canyon, creating an unexpected green haven amidst the dry surroundings. You can hike along the river, keep an eye out for wildlife like bighorn sheep and coyotes, or take a refreshing swim in its cool waters on hot summer days.

  • Embracing Outdoor Adventures
    If you're an adventure seeker, Afton Canyon won't disappoint you either. The area is a favorite among off-road enthusiasts, with plenty of dirt roads and trails for hiking, mountain biking, and off-highway vehicle (OHV) use.

Rock climbing is another popular activity in the canyon, thanks to its unique rock formations and challenging routes. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced climber, there's something for everyone here.

Your Gateway to Exploration
The campground itself is well-maintained, serving as an excellent base for your adventures. While reservations aren't available, the campsites are usually well-spaced, offering a decent amount of privacy.

If you need any information or assistance during your stay, the friendly BLM staff at the nearby Barstow office will be more than happy to help you out.

Easy to Reach
One standout feature of Afton Canyon Campground is its accessibility. Unlike some remote camping spots, this campground is relatively easy to reach. It's just a short drive from Barstow, making it a convenient choice for both local residents and travelers passing through.

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