Take nothing home with you but memories, leave nothing here but footprints… or tire tracks, as you
set out on those dusty roads from rustic Ballinger Campground and Day Use Area. Explore 11 4WD
roads, 12 ATV trails, and 14 motorcycle trails. Tucked away in the High Desert, Ballinger Campground and Day Use Area offers loose dirt, hard pack, sand, lots of steep hills, a few jumps and berms, Find a campsite where your rig can fit comfortably and do your best to leave everything just as you found it, in it’s natural state. The campsites have no barriers or boulders, so all sizes of toy haulers, trailers, and campers do well here. There are no established trees, allowing endless panoramic views of the surrounding scenic badlands.
- $20.00 per night per single family site for up to 6 people and 1 vehicle
- $10.00 extra person (up to 8) per night and $10.00 extra vehicle charge (up to 2) per night
- $10.00 day use fee per vehicle
Open daily, Year-round. There are 13 campsites located at the inner part of the facility that include picnic tables and fire rings. Fires are allowed only in designated fire rings. Pets are allowed. 2 vault toilets are located near the campsites. You should plan to be completely self-sustainable for the duration of your trip. There is no potable water onsite. To the left of the fee/information boards is a "staging area" to offload gear. There is no dump station.
The Ballinger Campground and Day Use areas are best appreciated by OHV enthusiasts. ATV's/Quad Runners/Dual Sports/Single track, will find access to 68 miles of marked and rated trails that range from novice friendly hard packed trails, twisty sand washes, open play areas to steep and rugged black diamond, all accessed from your scenic High desert camping spot.
- Camping fee includes 1 vehicle and 1 tent,
- trailer or RV.
- $10 fee for each extra vehicle.
- No drinking water is available.
- No public showers in the region.
- Please bring garbage bags. This facility is “Pack it in. Pack it out.”
- The nearest stores and gas are 15 miles in New Cuyama or 25 miles in Maricopa.
- Sporadic cell service can be found in the campground but a connection can be made at Hwy 33 a few miles from the entrance.
- Don’t ride alone. Tell someone where you plan to go and then stick to your plans. Don’t take unnecessary chances—help for emergencies is miles away.
- Make sure you have a first aid kit and other safety gear with you when riding.
- Bring your gnat/mosquito repellent in Spring/Summer/Fall
- Spark arrestors and Off-highway vehicle registration required (green sticker or red sticker required). Red sticker open riding dates Nov. 1 - March 15
- 2 night minimum stay on weekends.
- 3 night minimum stay on holidays.
- Click here for more information on Los Padres National Forest
- Don't Move Firewood: Protect California's forests from tree-killing pests by buying your firewood locally and burning it on-site. For more information visit firewood.ca.gov.
Nearby Natural Features
Junipers, lupine, and tall scrub and brush surround Ballinger Canyon, just inland of California's Central Coast and regionally bounded by the Sierra Madre and Caliente Mountain Ranges.