Wilderness Permits of California

Wilderness Permits of California

  • The entry location is what dictates who to get the permit from. Mt Whitney and Half Dome permits are an exception.
  • There is NOT one easy system to identify which land agency you need to get your California wilderness permit from. You are not missing where this easy web site is located.
  • Many permit submissions are VERY old fashioned. Many require you to send in a filled out form via snail mail (yes, with a stamp) and include a self addressed stamped envelope. Yosemite requests you to fax in your permit.
  • Rangers are very nice and will help via a phone call. Most often you will need to leave a message and they will call you back.

Southern California

Anza Borrego Desert State Park- No permit needed

Laguna Mountain (sleeping in campgrounds when Backpacking for most of the PCT in Laguna Mountains)

– Very Limited Wilderness Backpacking Locations: Cleveland National Forest Permit

Areas for Backpacking at Laguna Mountain Area


Mt San Jacinto


Mt San Jacinto Permit PDF


PCT north of I-8

Kitchen Creek Falls > Laguna Mountain (several places to Wilderness Camp)

Cleveland National Forest Permit


PCT north of Warner Springs

Agua Caliente (click here for a blog about Agua Caliente)

Cleveland National Forest Permit


PCT Mammoth

Inyo National Forest Permit (online at www.recreation.gov)

Map Inyo National Forest Permits (Many locations of Sierra Mountains)


PCT Kennedy Meadows and North

Map Inyo National Forest Permits (Many locations of Sierra Mountains)


Sierra Nevada Mountains

The US Forest Service, National Park Service, and Bureau of Land Management manage the more than two-dozen designated wilderness areas along the spine of the Sierra Nevada. It is recognized that it is very confusing. The site below was built to try and simplify the process needed to identify your permit.