Boondocking on BLM land in AZ

Finally, it is December 20. One day away from our long-awaited arrival to Southern California. The three previous nights were spent in Tucson, AZ, which is about a 5 hour 45 minute drive to our holiday destination of Calimesa, CA. While our daily travel record is more than that, we didn’t have IKEA and In-N-Out Burger distracting us like we did during this drive through Phoenix, so we decided to cut our last trip of the year short and boondock near the Arizona - California border.

We launched and found some BLM land in Tonopah, AZ near Saddle Mountain that had great reviews and even better sunsets! (If you don’t have Campendium bookmarked, save it! It’s great for campsite reviews, for parks and public land).

Boondocking in Saddle Mountain

This land seemed to be popular with boondockers! We read that people can stay up to three weeks at a time, which is a little long for us (ok that would be crazy long for us), but great to keep in mind if we ever wanted to get adventurous. There are many dirt road turn-offs on Courthouse Rd., which you can see if you zoom in on the map. We pulled into one of the first dirt roads we found, and ended up parking at the first little loop we found. Something about driving a 42 foot 5th wheel down a bumpy, rocky dirt road made me extremely uncomfortable! Plus, we had no idea what the turn around options were further toward the mountain (We later saw that you can turn around pretty easily about a mile further down the dirt road, so if you want to get adventurous, at least you won’t get stuck!)

We pulled up right as sunset was approaching, which gave us just enough time to get our chairs out, start a fire, and enjoy an amazing view. Dry wood and brush is plentiful there and there were already a couple fire pits out and ready to be used. All we had to do was grab our drinks and bluetooth speaker and we we’re able to enjoy one amazing happy hour!

It was a great place to spend our last night together as a family before we invaded our family for the holidays with 2+ weeks of moochdocking.

36635–37677 W Courthouse Rd, Tonopah, AZ  85354