Johnson Valley is a varied landscape for the off-highway vehicle driver. It is punctuated by steep red rocky mountains, rolling hills, open valleys, dry lake beds and sandy washes. Elevations range from 4,600 feet at Hartwell Hills to 2,300 feet at Melville Dry Lake. Vegetation consists of creosote scrub, annual grasses, wild flowers and Joshua Trees. The 188,000 acre OHV area is open during the week long King of the Hammers event to visitors from across the world. We ask that you take our spectator rules into consideration to ensure your trip is a safe and enjoyable vacation.
Access: The riding area can be entered from Highway 247 at Old Woman Springs Road or Camp Rock Road, 55 miles southeast of Barstow. Most visitors access the area off Camp Rock Road by driving north off of Highway 247. Staging for many competitive events is at Anderson Dry Lake, 10 miles north of Highway 247 and east of Camp Rock Road. These are graded dirt roads. King of the Hammers main camp takes place off Boone Road and is the southernmost entrance to the JVOHV area. Off Highway 247 in the town of Johnson Valley. Base camp or “Hammertown” is located on means Dry lake bed. Because of the number of routes into the park please be aware of your surroundings at all times.
Activities: Most visitors tour the area in four-wheel drive vehicles. The area near Anderson and Soggy, and Means Dry Lakes is used extensively for competitive racing events and OHV free play. There are numerous opportunities for hiking, rock hounding, and wildlife watching. The eastern boundary is shared with the Twenty-nine Palms Marine Air-Ground Combat Center. DO NOT enter this area.
Make sure you have the proper supply of drinking water at all times even in winter. The terrain is extremely difficult to navigate.
Offroading: Johnson Valley offers a riding opportunity for every skill level. The South east portion of the riding area offers a large mass of hills known to rock crawlers world wide as the “Hammers.” This area is for experts . Most of this area will be included in the King of the Hammers (KOH) race course, please be aware of the course markers, and make note of the direction of travel. Do not drive against the direction of the course at any time during KOH week. North of the Hammers offers a quality riding experience for novice and intermediate riders and some small dune riding experience. There are two car/truck courses for racing in the north central and western portions of the valley and offers four events each year These areas may also be used for the KOH race, please make note of course markers and the direction of travel. Anderson Dry Lake on the western boundary of the area is used for casual riding for intermediate and novice riders. It is also used extensively as a staging area for competitive motorcycle events. Cougar Buttes has many uses and is a very popular with off-roaders. The butte boast areas with small rolling hills for the novice, rocky ridges for the more experienced riders, huge rock structures for the rock crawlers and is a popular place for motorcycle trials events. The 188,000 acre of-highway vehicle riding area has something for every rider at every skill level. Please be aware of your surroundings as we are sharing the park with multiple types of off-road recreation during the King of the Hammers event.
Rules for recreational visitors to Johnson valley are as follows;
- Helmets are required on all ATVs! Also, there are no passengers allowed on ATVs.
- All vehicles must have a muffler or spark arrester and have either a street-legal license or be registered as an off-highway vehicle.
- Vehicles being operated at night must have head and tail lights.
- The desert tortoise lives here and is a federally protected species. Please do not handle or disturb these animals.
- Camping is allowed anywhere within the riding area that does not block travel on a road and is limited to 14 days.
- Possession or use of pallets or wood containing nails is prohibited (43 CFR 8365.1-6).
- Note: Possession or use of any glass container used to carry any liquid for drinking purposes is prohibited. (43 CFR 8361.1-6)
- Do not burn pallets or wood with nails!
- Fireworks are not allowed in the JVOHV area.
- It is unlawful to dump onto the ground RV waste water tanks.
- Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Rock ledges are steep, and composed of loose Rocks. Do not climb the steep ledges above spectators you may create a rock slide.
- Do not view the race within 150 feet of the race course.
- Do not attempt to assist extrication efforts during the race unless called upon by a track official, or the driver of the ve-hicle. You may cause the Team disqualification if they receive outside assistance during the race.
- Do not attempt to touch any vehicle that is moving.
- Do not drive backwards on the race course.
- Do not drive on the race course
- Do not view the race on the outside of a turn, or downhill from an obstacle.
- Keep all dogs on a leash, and children in a safe location at all times.
- Do not view the race from the pit stop locations unless you are a banded team member.
- Do not park in the race course.
- Driving under the influence is illegal off-road.
- Cross the race course only when it is safe to do so.
- Do not stack or remove rocks on the race course, do not modify Course markers, and do not attempt to increase the difficulty of the race course.
- Law enforcement will be conducting checkpoints during the King of the Hammers race, please do not put yourself or others at risk, and refrain from drinking alcohol outside your camp.
- Be aware open mine shafts located throughout the JVOHV area. These are dangerous.
- The speed limit on Boone Road for the week of KOH is 15 MPH
- The speed limit in camp is 15 MPH
- Remote Pit location speed limits are 20MPH
- KOH is a “No Chase” race, you may not chase your race vehicle at any time during KOH.
- There is absolutely no outside assistance allowed in KOH.
- All vehicles must possess a valid registration. Non Ca OHV temp registration is required.
- Do not camp within 200 feet of the race course.
- Do not stand on the course
- Haul out your own trash, Please respect our public lands and Tread Lightly.
Hammerking Productions suggest each spectator vehicle be equipped with the following items, including but not limited to;
Drinking water, GPS, Race band radio, Compass, Flashlight, course map, and should be in good working condition.