Services in Baker, California include; gas stations, restaurants, tire repair, lodging, dump stations, mini markets and other services vital for the traveling public. However, if you check your campground directory or do an online search for campgrounds or RV parks in Baker, California you are unlikely to find any listings. I am happy to report that there is one huge campground just south of town. It covers 1.6 million acres and is known as the Mojave National Preserve. Camping is plentiful and it is free! The preserves website and brochures state the following, “Roadside vehicle camping is permitted in areas that have been traditionally used for this purpose. Camping tramples vegetation and disturbs soils. By reusing existing sites, you help protect the desert from further damage. Sites with existing rock fire rings should be considered disturbed sites suitable for roadside camping.”
To save you the trouble of finding the “traditionally used” places, I will fill you in: Head southeast out of Baker crossing over I-15 into the preserve on Kelbaker Road, in a little under a mile when the Kelbaker Road turns due east, exit on the dirt road to the right. From there travel south / southwest towards the low hills just over a mile distant. You can camp along the first low hill you come to or if you continue to the next bend in the road (left). When you get to the next bend take a right turn on the intersecting dirt road which will deliver you to an assortment of camp spaces. Park your rig next to a fire ring and enjoy your Mojave National Preserve campsite. Those of you with onboard navigation can just enter N35 14.381 W116 04.0035 and be directed to the site. If you camp in this area on a busy weekend, you will be astonished by the volume of traffic traveling on I-15 between Las Vegas and Los Angeles. The string of never ending headlights is almost more interesting than the spectacular stargazing available in the preserve. Complete camping guidelines are available at: http://www.nps.gov/moja/planyourvisit/camping-regs.htm
A 1.6 million acre campground, equals one big adventure in RVing!
Boondocking about 1.5 Miles South of Baker
Dave Helgeson’s many roles in the RV industry started before he even had a driver’s license. His grandparents and father owned an RV dealership before the term “RV” had been coined, and Dave played a pivotal role in nearly every position of an RV dealership. He and his wife Cheri launched their own RV dealership in the Pacific Northwest. The duo also spent 29 years overseeing regional RV shows. Dave has also served as President of a local chapter of the Recreational Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA), worked on the board of advisors for the RV Technician Program of a local technical college, and served as a board member of the Manufactured Home and RV Association. Dave’s reputation earned him the title of “The foremost expert on boondocking,” bestowed by RV industry icon, the late Gary Bunzer (The RV Doctor). When he’s not out boondocking, you’ll find Dave in the spotlight at RV shows across the country, giving seminars about all things RVing. He and Cheri currently roam in their fifth travel trailer, with Dave doing all the service, repair and modifications to his own unit.