Petroglyphs on North Lava Bed Wash near Seventeen Mile Point in Mojave National Preserve
Visitors driving though Mojave National Preserve between Baker and Kelso Depot may wish to stop near Seventeen Mile Point for a quick walk to simple petroglyphs drawn into the volcanic rock outcroppings along the road. While certainly not the only petroglyphs in the preserve, these might be the easiest to get to.
On Kelbaker Road, 13.4 miles from the 15 freeway in Baker and 21.1 miles from the Kelso Depot, there is a small turnoff on the east side of the road. Park here and take the footpath up a short slope to the northern side of an elevated strip of dark volcanic rock. The path continues beneath the 15-foot tall rock shelf past thousand-year-old Indian drawings. Look carefully for the simple designs drawn into the dark rock. The engravings disappear after a short distance. Either return back along the rocks or drop down to the wash below to return to the trailhead for a 0.25-mile round trip hike.
To get to the trailhead: The unmarked turnout is located on the western edge of the cinder fields, 1/3 of a mile north of a larger wash (that is used for roadside camping) in a bend in Kelbaker Road refereed to as Seventeen Mile Point. The path is visible to traffic heading toward Kelso Depot from Baker, but is hard to spot in the opposite direction.
Trailhead address: Kelbaker Road, Mojave National Preserve, CA 92309
Trailhead coordinates: 35.205572, -115.872077 (35° 12′ 20.05″N 115° 52′ 19.47″W)
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There are a few campgrounds and endless roadside camping within the preserve.
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