The University of Montana
Missoula, MT 59812
The Bristol Mountains Wilderness now contains a total of 70,028 acres and is managed by the Bureau of Land Management. All of the wilderness is in the state of California.
Public land becomes wilderness through legislation passed by the United States Congress in the form of public laws. For the Bristol Mountains Wilderness, this process began in 1994 when 68,515 acres were designated by Public Law 103-433.
The Bristol Mountains Wilderness is part of the 106 million acre National Wilderness Preservation System. This System of wild lands contributes significantly to the ecological, economic, and social health of our country. Wilderness provides clean air and water, a shelter for endangered species, sacred places for indigenous peoples, a living laboratory for research, and a classroom for exploring personal values while experiencing risk, reward, and self-reliance. In wilderness, you can enjoy challenging recreational activities like hiking, backpacking, climbing, kayaking, canoeing, rafting, horse packing, bird watching, stargazing, and extraordinary opportunities for solitude.
Unless otherwise specified, no motorized equipment or mechanical transport is allowed. This is true for all federal lands managed as designated wilderness.
Leave No Trace principles:
- Plan Ahead and Prepare
- Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
- Dispose of Waste Properly
- Leave What You Find
- Minimize Campfire Impacts
- Respect Wildlife
- Be Considerate of Other Visitors
Map + Directions
Bristol Mountains Wilderness lies two miles northeast of Ludlow, California between the towns of Barstow and Needles, in San Bernardino County, California. Maps of the area can be obtained from the Bureau of Land Management Field Office in Needles, California.