Coso Range Wilderness

The Coso Range Wilderness is a 49,296-acre property in the northern part of the Coso Range. Coso Peak itself lies to the southeast, outside the wilderness area.

High points on the property offer views north to the Owens Valley and east to the Sierra Nevadas. The property itself is a wild mix of ancient volcanic formations, open valleys, dry washes and deep canyons. The landscape is colorful, although heavily dotted with Joshua trees, creosote bush, cholla and other thorny plants. On the southern side of the wilderness Cactus Flat and McCloud Flat were once active mining areas.

Southeast of Olancha, the wilderness has paved roads around three sides of it but to even get close to the wilderness boundary, high clearance 4WD is highly recommended. Trails from the west side seem to converge on Vermillion Canyon, a striking landform running west from the heart of the wilderness. Trails from the east and north sides seem to converge on Joshua Flat, a high point in the northeast part of the wilderness.

Photo courtesy of the BLM, CCA 2.0 License