|Location||Kern County, California|
|Nearest city||Ridgecrest, California|
|Area||88,290 acres (357.3 km2)|
|Governing body||U.S. Forest Service , Bureau of Land Management|
The Kiavah Wilderness is a federally designated wilderness area located in the Mojave Desert, Scodie Mountains, and southern Sierra Nevada in Kern County, California, United States. California State Route 178 connects the town of Lake Isabella to State Highway 14 in the east, crossing Walker Pass at the north boundary of the wilderness.
The Kiavah Wilderness was created in 1994 with the passage of the California Desert Protection Act (Public Law 103–433), is jointly managed by the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), and is mostly within the Sequoia National Forest. This wilderness is part of the National Cooperative Land and Wildlife Management Area and the BLM's Jawbone–Butterbredt Area of Critical Environmental Concern, which was designated to protect critical wildlife and Native American values.
It is located west of Inyokern and 50 miles (80 km) northeast of Bakersfield. There are 88,290 acres (357.3 km2) of wilderness and 702 acres (2.84 km2) of partially roaded nonwilderness.
Located on a broad plateau rising immediately south of Walker Pass in the southern Sierra Nevada, are the Scodie Mountains. The highest peaks are Skinner Peak (7,073 ft ) in the south and Pinyon Peak (6,768 ft ) in the north. Many canyons cut through the flanks of the plateau except in the north, which has an abrupt 3,000-foot (910 m) escarpment.
Three seasonal springs flow from the slope of the plateau: Yellowjacket, McIvers and Willow Springs. Other springs flow from the canyon folds.
The wilderness encompasses the eroded hills, canyons and alluvial fans-bajadas of the Scodie Mountains Unit within the Sequoia National Forest—the southern extremity of the Sierra Nevada. A unique mixing of several different species of plants and animals occurs within the transition zone between the Mojave Desert and Sierra Nevada.
The Kiavah Wilderness is one of only two protected areas that support a significant woodland of pinyon-juniper in California. Other plant life include Mormon tea, sagebrush, creosote, burrobush and shadscale, pinyon pine, juniper, canyon oak, grey pine and Joshua trees. Spring wildflower displays are from April to June.
A rare and endemic wildflower, the Walker Pass milkvetch (Astragalus ertterae) of the pea family, grows within the Pinyon-Juniper woodland. It grows in the sandy-loamy to granitic soils associated with pinyon pines and canyon live oaks. It is primarily found on west-facing slopes from 5,600 to 6,200 feet (1,700 to 1,900 m) elevation. The Walker Pass milkvetch was first described in 1987 from a collection made in 1982 along a newly constructed section of the Pacific Crest Trail. There are fewer than 10 populations of this perennial herb, all of which are located in Kern County. Very little information is known about this plant, nor is it listed under state or federal endangered species laws. "If this plant truly is as rare as presently believed, it is crucial that all existing populations be protected." said M. Elvin of the Bureau of Land Management.
The semiarid conditions with few reliable water sources restrict wildlife habitat. The U.S. Forest Service has installed water guzzlers and springs to increase water supply for the small number of mule deer as well as mountain quail and California quail (or Valley quail). The rough-legged hawk, yellow-headed blackbird, gray-crowned rosy finch, and sage sparrow have also been seen here.
Activities in the wilderness include day-hiking, backpacking, pinyon nut gathering, and nature photography.
Most of the recreation is concentrated along forest road 27S11 in the southeast where off-highway vehicles are frequent. McIver's Cabin is a popular destination.
The Pacific Crest Trail travels the length of the wilderness for 17 miles (27 km).
The other major trail is the Cholla Canyon Trail with a length of over 4 miles (6 km) and passes three seasonal springs en route.
The Sierra Nevada is a mountain range in the Western United States, between the Central Valley of California and the Great Basin. The vast majority of the range lies in the state of California, although the Carson Range spur lies primarily in Nevada. The Sierra Nevada is part of the American Cordillera, an almost continuous chain of mountain ranges that forms the western "backbone" of the Americas.
The Owens Peak Wilderness is a 73,767-acre (298.52 km2) wilderness area comprising the rugged eastern face of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Owens Peak (8,445 ft) is the high point. The land was set aside with the passage of the California Desert Protection Act of 1994 by the US Congress.
The Arizona Strip is the part of Arizona lying north of the Colorado River. Despite being larger in area than several U.S. states, the entire region has a population of fewer than 10,000 people. Consisting of northeastern Mohave County and northwestern Coconino County, the largest settlements in the Strip are Colorado City, Fredonia, and Beaver Dam, with smaller communities of Scenic, Littlefield and Desert Springs. The Kaibab Indian Reservation lies within the region. Lying along the North Rim of the Grand Canyon creates physical barriers to the rest of Arizona. Only three major roads traverse the region, I-15 crosses the northwestern corner while Arizona State Route 389 and U.S. Route 89A crosses the northeastern part of the strip, US 89A crosses the Colorado River via the Navajo Bridge, providing the only direct road connection between the strip and the rest of the state. The nearest metropolitan area is the St. George, Utah metro area, to which the region is more connected than to the rest of Arizona.
The Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness (BRCW) is located in western Colorado with a small portion extending into eastern Utah, USA, within the arid Colorado Plateau region approximately 15 miles (24 km) west of Grand Junction, Colorado. The wilderness lies on the northwest flank of the Uncompahgre Plateau. It is characterized by the high, east-west trending Black Ridge dissected by seven major canyon systems, draining into the Colorado River in Ruby Canyon. Elevations range from 4,700 feet (1,400 m) above sea level along the river to 6,800 feet (2,070 m). Canyons vary in length from several miles to twelve miles in length and may contain interesting side canyons. Geological features in these canyons include spires, windows, giant alcoves and desert varnish. Canyons may reach a depth of almost 1,000 feet (300 m), forming spectacular red rock cliffs. Spring runoff and summer thunderstorms create glistening waterfalls and plunge pools. Rattlesnake Canyon contains the second largest concentration of natural arches in the country. Mee Canyon is even more remote, and contains Arch Tower.
The Scodie Mountains are a sub-mountain range of the Southern Sierra Nevada rising from the Mojave Desert, and located in Kern County, California.
The Mt. Moriah Wilderness is a 89,790-acre (36,340 ha) wilderness area in the northern part of the Snake Range of White Pine County, in the eastern section of the state of Nevada in the western United States.
Old Woman Mountains Wilderness is a wilderness area in the Old Woman Mountains of the eastern Mojave Desert. It is located south of Essex in San Bernardino County, California.
Jennie Lakes Wilderness is a protected area in the Sierra Nevada, in Tulare County, California. It is located 60 miles (97 km) east of Fresno and managed by the US Forest Service.
Bright Star Wilderness is a 8,190-acre (3,314 ha) wilderness area in Kern County in the U.S. state of California.
The Domeland Wilderness is a federally designated wilderness area located 55 miles (89 km) northeast of Bakersfield, California USA. It encompasses 130,081 acres (526.42 km2), is jointly managed by the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and is mostly within the Sequoia National Forest.
The Sacatar Trail Wilderness is a federally designated wilderness area located 20 miles (32 km) northwest of Ridgecrest, California USA. It was created in 1994 with the passage of the California Desert Protection Act - Public Law 103-433 - and is managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). The wilderness is 51,900 acres (210 km2) in size and protects portions of the southern Sierra Nevada Mountain Range.
The South Sierra Wilderness is a federally designated wilderness area in the Southern Sierra Nevada, in eastern California. It is located 65 miles (105 km) northeast of Bakersfield, and is southwest of Owens Lake and Olancha.
The Golden Trout Wilderness is a federally designated wilderness area in the Sierra Nevada, in Tulare County and Inyo County, California. It is located 40 miles (64 km) east of Porterville, California within Inyo National Forest and Sequoia National Forest.
The Piper Mountain Wilderness is a federally designated wilderness area located in the White Mountains 20 miles (32 km) northeast of Big Pine, California in Inyo County, California.
The Sylvania Mountains Wilderness is a federally designated wilderness area located 30 miles (48 km) east of Bishop in the state of California. The wilderness is 18,677acres in size and is managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). The California Desert Protection Act of 1994 created the Sylvania Mountains Wilderness and was added to the National Wilderness Preservation System. The wilderness is bordered by Nevada stateline on the east, Piper Mountain Wilderness on the west and Death Valley National Park to the south.
The Chimney Peak Wilderness is a 13,134-acre (53.15 km2) wilderness area located 20 miles (32 km) northwest of Ridgecrest, in southeastern Tulare County, California.
The Santa Rosa Wilderness is a 72,259-acre (292.42 km2) wilderness area in Southern California, in the Santa Rosa Mountains of Riverside and San Diego counties, California. It is in the Colorado Desert section of the Sonoran Desert, above the Coachella Valley and Lower Colorado River Valley regions in a Peninsular Range, between La Quinta to the north and Anza Borrego Desert State Park to the south. The United States Congress established the wilderness in 1984 with the passage of the California Wilderness Act, managed by both the US Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management. In 2009, the Omnibus Public Land Management Act was signed into law which added more than 2,000 acres (8.1 km2). Most of the Santa Rosa Wilderness is within the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument.
Cottonwood Canyon Wilderness is a 11,712-acre (47.4 km2) wilderness area in the US state of Utah. It was designated March 30, 2009, as part of the Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009. Located adjacent to the southern edge of the Dixie National Forest, it encompasses and protects a transition zone between the Colorado Plateau to the east and the Mojave Desert to the west. It is bordered by the Cottonwood Forest Wilderness to the northeast and is itself a part of the Red Cliffs National Conservation Area.
Jawbone Canyon is a geographic feature in the Mojave Desert and a Bureau of Land Management area located in Kern County, California, 20 miles (32 km) north of Mojave on CA 14. The area is a popular destination for hikers and off road vehicle enthusiasts.
The Stateline Wilderness is a wilderness area located in San Bernardino County, California, approximately three miles northwest of Primm, Nevada and I-15. Having an area of approximately 7,004 acres (2,834 ha), it contains the eastern terminus of the 15-mile-long (24 km) Clark Mountain Range.