Tucked away in the high desert, surrounded by scenic views of the badlands in the Los Padres National Forest, Ballinger Campground and day use area offers the perfect getaway for those looking to access off-highway vehicle (OHV) trails. Explore 11 four-wheel drive roads, 12 all-terrain vehicle (ATV) trails, and 14 motorcycle trails, which include loose dirt, hard pack, sand, steep hills, and a few jumps and berms.
Open daily and year-round, the campground includes 13 campsites each with a picnic table and fire ring. Two vault toilets are located near the campsites. You should plan to be completely self-sustainable for the duration of your trip. There is no potable water onsite. To the left of the fee/information boards is a "staging area" to offload gear. There is no dump station.
The campsites have no barriers or boulders, so all sizes of toy haulers, trailers and campers do well here.
This location is CLOSED. As of 1/7/2020 pursuant to USDA Forest Service Regional Order: All campgrounds are CLOSED for overnight stays through January 29th, 2021. Affected reservations have been canceled and refunds have been issued. Local managers are committed to the health and safety of recreational visitors and our staff. We are following the guidelines from our agency and the CDC regarding COVID-19, closely monitoring the situation and responding to current conditions. Please continue to monitor this page for status updates. Day use areas remain open and are encouraged to be visited with members of your own household for exercise and enjoyment. Please see Campone.com for a complete list of open Day Use Areas.
Junipers, lupine and tall scrub and brush surround Ballinger Canyon, just inland of California's Central Coast and regionally bound by the Sierra Madre and Caliente Mountain Ranges.
Hiking trails, biking and fishing are easily accessed within 30 minutes from Ballinger Campground. Day trips to the higher elevation mountains for snow play in the winter.
The Ballinger Campground and day use areas are best appreciated by OHV enthusiasts. ATVs/Quad Runners/Dual Sports/Single track, will find access to 68 miles of marked and rated trails that range from novice-friendly hard packed trails, twisty sand washes, open play areas to steep and rugged black diamond, all accessed from your scenic high desert camping spot.
For campground inquiries, please call: 805-434-1996
From Los Angeles: Take I-5 north to 126 west to Santa Paula Hwy 150 exit. Go north on Hwy 150 for 20 miles to the intersection of highway 33. Go north over the mountain, 55 miles to Ballinger Cyn rd. Turn right and proceed 2 miles to the entrance.