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Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

Julian, CA
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  • 98%
    Outdoor Enthusiasts
  • 89%
    Adventure Travelers
  • 89%
    Backpackers
  • 79%
    Green Travelers
  • 70%
    Local Culture
  • 60%
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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Ruth Newell
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    + 6
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    5 Jun 03, 2014

    Perched on the butte above the Seco del Diablo overlooking the Carrizo Badlands in the southeastern corner of the Anza Borrego Desert State Park east of San Diego are the Arroyo Tapiado Mud Caves. Formed more than five million years ago, there are 22 caves and nine slot canyons in what is recognized as one of the world’s largest mud cave systems. Many of the caves are difficult to locate but like all adventures, the reward is found at the end of the quest. One cave’s roof looms 80 feet above the floor and another actually has a second level. Others are bat havens or spectacularly speckled with light filtering in from natural skylights piercing the cave’s roof. Experienced cavers advise visitors to don a headlamp, helmet and kneepads and to NOT climb on top of the caves as mud roofs DO collapse. Also, mountain lions have been found sleeping in the caves, therefore, extreme caution is advised.

    Recommended for:Adventure TravelersBackpackersOutdoor Enthusiasts
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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State ParkAmbassadorPro 2014
    Cecile Kiki'lia Aparis-Dela Cruz
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    + 16
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    5 May 12, 2014

    Part of the vast Anza Borrego desert are the mud Caves in Arroyo Tapiado which have been around for close to 5 million years and are some of the most extensive mud caves on the planet. If you are lucky you can find fossils of creatures 1-2 million years old in this area. This area houses the coolest not in just exploring but temperature during hot temperature.

    Recommended for:Adventure TravelersBackpackersGreen TravelersLocal Culture
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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State ParkPro 2014
    Sara Benson
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    5 Jan 14, 2014

    Forgot until today how awesome the scenery is at California's biggest state park, down south near San Diego and Imperial County. Drive from Warner Springs down to Borrego Springs (a retro desert resort town) for dizzying views. The Elephant Trees Trail near Ocotillo Wells and the nature trail at Tamarisk Grove are great short hikes. Take the dirt road around Blair Valley to see Native American pictographs and morteros (grinding rocks). Starry skies are the best reason to camp overnight, maybe at primitive (and typically deserted) Bow Willow campground in the southern part of the park, past Agua Caliente County Park's hot-springs pools.

    Recommended for:Adventure TravelersFamily TravelersGreen TravelersOutdoor Enthusiasts
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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    William S
    5 Dec 13, 2013

    Anza-Borrego Desert State Park includes 500 mi (800 km) of dirt roads, 12 designated wilderness areas, and 110 mi (180 km) of hiking trails to provide visitors with many opportunities to experience the park's unique version of the Colorado Desert environs. Park information and maps, interpretive events and displays, and listening devices for the hearing impaired are all available in the Visitor Center.[2] Anza-Borrego Desert State Park has wi-fi access in various sections of the park, as do 55 other List of California state parks.
    Many visitors approach Anza-Borrego from the east-Coachella Valley side via California County Route S22 and S78. Visitors can also approach from the west-Pacific Ocean side via California County Routes S79 or S67 and add experiences of passing through the high and forested Laguna Mountains, such as in Cuyamaca Rancho State Park.[3] These highways climb from the coast to 2,400 ft (730 m) above sea level, then descend 2,000 ft (610 m) down into the Borrego Valley in the center of the park. The great bowl of the Anza-Borrego desert is surrounded by mountains, with the Vallecito Mountains to the south and the highest Santa Rosa Mountains to the north. They are in the park's wilderness area, without paved roads, and with the only year-round creeks in Anza-Borrego.

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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Joanne B
    5 Aug 01, 2013

    The largest State Park in California. Camping is allowed throughout this gorgeous desert landscape. There are hiking trails and off road sites to please everyone in this great park.

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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Alec M
    5 Jul 23, 2013

    If you've never experienced a real desert...this is it ! Two hours to get there and over 100 degrees in the summer but gorgeous !

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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Olivier Pasco
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    3 May 28, 2013

    Borrego Palm Oasis is a nice easy hike in the desert leading to a bunch of palm trees growing by a water source.

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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Libby S
    3 May 07, 2013

    Great place to go in spring. Make sure you time it with the flowers. Also- make sure you get to the oasis. I love it.

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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State ParkPro 2014
    Kim L. "Lady Boss"
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    + 14
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    5 Apr 23, 2013

    Slot Canyon review:
    Beautiful awesome rock sculptures.. =) If you haven't been here & you like hiking then you gotta go here!

    Trailhead coordinates: 33.182132, -116.214176

    Simply named THE SLOT, this narrow silt stone canyon provides one of the most exciting hikes in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park.

    1.2-mike trek is capped off with a passage beneath a gravity-defying rock span. There is only 100 feet of elevation loss on this short hike, but the memory will be much more profound due to the awesome picturesque formations around you.

    The slot canyon in Anza Borrego is one of those hikes that you never realize you have right here in California.

    The slot canyon is a beautiful natural formation nestled in the heart of the Anza Borrego State Park, about an hour and a half East of San Diego.

    The park has no fees to enter, thousands of miles to explore and off road on and has unique areas such as the palm tree oasis of Hellhole Canyon, abandoned mines and the slot canyon itself.

    There is no trail marker for The Slot. From the parking area, look for footprints leading down into the ravine below. Left of the trailhead, just to the right of a dirt road continuing east, there is a wide path that appears to descend into the canyon. This is not the way. The winding trail cliffs out above a dry falls in a side canyon above The Slot. The correct route is the narrow steep-looking track that drops right off the rim of the ravine, straight ahead from the parking area.

    Make no mistake, you will have to work to find this place. While it is technically on the map, it is still difficult to find as it is located about two miles down a dirt road that is very easy to miss. My suggestion would be to check in with the visitors center before trying to head out to the canyon, my map below will get you close, but it is really easy to miss if you do not know at least a range of where the road will be.

    The road itself was dirt and a little rough but we were able to go 3/4ths of the way with a Ford Focus so most cars should be able to get at least as close as we did. There are no signs to direct you where to go, just know when you get to the area in the below picture you want to head left down into the canyon for the start of the slot.

    Right where the above car is where you can make you way down. Also, make sure that you mark your entrance as it can be hard to tell exactly where you entered when you come back out. We made a small pile of rocks that let us know this was our exit.

    After walking about 100 yards you will see the entrance to the start of the slot canyon. The canyon itself starts to get taller and taller around you, while the path gets more and more narrow.

    The next mile or so is a amazing experience. You simply weave your way through the canyon as it gets to about 100 feet on either side of you. The canyon gets so narrow at some place that you actually have to go sideways, as it was scraping and making walking through the narrow canyon difficult.

    About three fourths of the way you will reach the natural rock bridge. It is a great place to stop and take in the size of the canyon you are in.

    After you pass the bridge the slot canyon opens and dumps you out on a dirt road. From here you can walk all the way out and loop back around or you can simple head back into the canyon.

    More info: http://www.everytrail.co…

    Bring plenty water, snacks, comfy walking/hiking shoes, hat & sunscreen.

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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    John Ewalt
    First to Review
    4 Dec 24, 2012

    It is a secluded desert park that is a relatively long way from San Diego and Julian. The drive out is fairly impressive. It is quite dry year-round, so water should be on hand at all times. Beyond outdoor activities, there is very little to do here.

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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Pamela Schreckengost
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    5 Oct 11, 2012

    When the flowers in the desert bloom in the Spring time this place is so beautiful. This time of the year it is pleasant and not too hot but, usually good weather. Cactus blooms along with the flowers is spectacular. Hawks migrate this time of year and you can see hundreds soaring above you.

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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Eric Schoep
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    + 3
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    5 Aug 12, 2012

    A great view on the outskirts of San Diego County. Street legal vehicles required so you don't have to worry about bikes but check the recent weather conditions and forecast...4x4 is not necessary but suggested going through the sandy wash. Have fun exploring and be safe!!

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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Susan Prevo
    5 Jul 05, 2012

    Anza-BORREGO DESERT STATE PARK. The largest of the state parks The 6000,000- acre park is one of largest state parks in the United States and each spring, following winter rains, explodes into a rainbow of colorful wildflower blossoms. You must experience the natural beauty of the desert...................................lots more to see...........................................................

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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Michael Connolly Jr
    5 Jul 04, 2012

    ABDSP is largest state park in the lower 48 states; its sprawling landscape is a favorite place to car camp, take your 4wd vehicle 'soft-roading' on any of the miles of dirt and sand roads, or some open cross-country hiking and naturalist adventures. This place is one of the crown-jewels in the California State Park system, you could easily spend days on end camping and playing here. Be well stocked with the provisions you need to be comfy here - the small market in Borrego Springs (right on Christmas Circle) has some basics, but bring what you need from home. Spring wildflowers can bring crowds, but there's enough space out there for everyone to play.

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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Barbara Kossy
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    5 Apr 20, 2014

    Great hiking, interesting geology, and flowers in season.

    Recommended for:Outdoor Enthusiasts
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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Andrew S
    5 Jul 28, 2013
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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Laurie R
    5 Apr 27, 2013
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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Kristine Burkhalter
    2 Jun 28, 2012
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  • Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
    Mario Sanches
    4 Aug 12, 2012
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Description

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is a nature reserve in southern California's Colorado Desert. It is the second largest state park in the contiguous United States behind only New York's Adirondack State Park. The park is notable its breadth of habitats, ranging from low desert to montane chaparral and woodlands to pristine oases. These oases are the best way to see the area's diverse fauna, including road runners, big horn sheep, chuckwallas and quail. Anza-Borrego is also well known for its magnificent wildflower blooms (best during March-May, but all seasons feature flowering plants) which are best taken in by camping off-road, the most popular activity in the park.

OverviewEdit

4.5 out of 5
19 members' reviews
47 people visited Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

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