General Information #12434

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Commercial/Desert Land (108,900 SQ) in Ocotillo Wells

S-2 Zoning – Open Space/Preservation

The S-2 Zone is considered to be the Open Space Preservation Zone. The primary intent here is to preserve the cultural, biological, and open space areas that are rich and natural as well as cultural resources. The S-2 Zone is dominated by native desert habitat and stark topographic features. Single-family dwelling, hotels/motels, and accessory structures are allowed.

Crossing Highways/ Freeways:  Highway 78 & Pole line Road

Ocotillo Wells

Ocotillo Wells County Airport offers two dirt runways.[2] Runway extents are marked by white paving blocks. The Los Puertecitos Historic Site is on State Route 78 about 1.5 miles (2.4 km) west of the community.[3] Gasoline is available in Borrego Springs (17 mi or 27 km west), in Westmorland (18 mi or 29 km east) and at the Blu-In Cafe (3 mi or 4.8 km east). Gas may not always be available the Blu-In Cafe which, besides the gas station, operates a restaurant, store, and RV park. Gas has not been available at the Blue-In in over 3 years (2011). Several other small businesses sell off-road accessories and rent all-terrain vehicles. Most businesses in the area are closed during the summer months. My Desert Rose, which was a traditional restaurant located at the intersection of Highway 78 and Split Mountain Road, burned down in 2008.

California State Parks’ Ocotillo Wells SVRA has over 80,000 acres of magnificent desert for off-road exploration and recreation, including a 4X4 training area. Outside its boundaries, to the south and east, large tracts of BLM land are also open to off-highway vehicles. The western boundary and part of the northern boundary connect with the half-million acre Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, which is closed to off-road recreation, but open to exploration by highway-legal vehicles along established primitive roads.

Riding in both the new Truck haven addition north of S-22 and the area east of Pole line Road is restricted to roads and trails only. Much of these two areas is actually federal or state land which Ocotillo Wells SVRA is allowed to manage, so this policy is essential for continued OHV access here. These two parcels are not open riding areas and this policy is enforced.


Ocotillo Wells is open seven days a week, 24 hours a day. Open camping is available throughout the park for up to 30 days per calendar year. Camping is not permitted at the Shell Reef, Devils Slide, and Blow Sand Hill areas. If you are in a self-contained vehicle with holding tanks, fill your tanks before you arrive—water filling stations are not available. Also, the park does not have a dump station for your waste water disposal.

Vault restrooms and limited shade ramadas are located in the Quarry, Cove, Main Street, Holly Road, and Hidden Valley areas. Pay showers are available only in Holmes Camp and Ranger Station Road. The pay showers accept quarters.

Vehicle repair shops, restaurants, and motels are available in the towns of Borrego Springs, Salton Sea, and Ocotillo Wells.
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Off-road recreation

The California Department of Parks and Recreation operates the Ocotillo Wells State Vehicle Recreation Area which borders the community. This off-road vehicle area is part of the department’s Southern Division, Ocotillo Wells District which is headquartered in Borrego Springs.[4]

Free camping is available at numerous locations along State Route 78. The most popular of these are Main Street, Holmes Camp, County Line Road, and Pole Line Road. Each of these areas have ample access to numerous trails that provide a challenge to riders of all skill levels. A wide variety of off road vehicles can be operated within the park. Any vehicle with a license plate or off road registration is legal.

Features in the park include:

  • Blowsand Hill, visible from Highway 78 and located between Ranger Station Road and Main Street
  • Devils Slide, a small sand dune adjacent to a steep rocky hill
  • Shell Reef
  • Gas Dome
  • Pumpkin Patch

A map of these locations as well as numerous other trails is available at the ranger station.

Land Specifics

Assessor Parcel Number (APN): 018-240-011
Road Access: Highway 78
Slope Description: Mostly Flat
Legal Description: Nw4 Of Se4 Of Nw4 Of Nw4 Sec 17 12-10 2.50Ac
Dimensions: 345.09 x 339.22 x 343.63 x 334.33
Zoning: Open Space/Preservation
Zoning Code: S-2
Zoning Definition: The S-2 Zone is considered to be the Open Space Preservation Zone. The primary intent here is to preserve the cultural, biological, and open space areas that are rich and natural as well as cultural resources. The S-2 Zone is dominated by native desert habitat and stark topographic features. While certain uses are allowed within the S-2 Zone, such uses must be compatible with the intent of the Open Space and Conservation Element of the General Plan. § 90519.01 PERMITTED USES IN THE S-2 ZONE The following uses are allowed in the S-2 Zone: a) Accessory agricultural buildings, structures and uses including farm buildings, housing of agricultural product, garages and implementation shelters, provided no livestock or any building or enclosure used in connection with livestock shall be closer than 100 feet to the property lines. (not allowed within ONCAP) b) All permitted uses in S-1 zone under § 90518.01 except for mobile home and/or RV park c) Apiaries d) Keeping of poultry, or similar small animals. e) Pasturing and grazing, provided however, that it shall not exceed one large animal (horse, mule, cow, etc.) or five medium size animal (hogs, goat, sheep) for each acre of the area of the parcel of land upon which the same are kept, except the temporary pasturing of livestock to feed on vegetable manner grown on said premises made be permitted. The feeding of garbage (cooked or raw), produce, or import materials shall be strictly prohibited. (not allowed with ONCAP) f) Public buildings g) Residence, one per legal parcel. h) Solar energy extraction generation provided that it is for on-site consumption only. i) Stands for the sale of agricultural, horticultural, or farming products grown on the premises. j) Storage of agricultural products. k) Storage of products used for premises. l) Home Occupation per Division 4, Chapter 4 (home occupation permit required)