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One of the more visited attractions in Mojave Preserve, the lava tubes are popular for good reason! A short jaunt from the usual trailhead brings you to otherworldly subterranean lava tubes. The tubes are short but dramatic. If you happen to have good timing, the way the light bounces in from above through several small skylights at certain times of the day is magical. Our visit, mid-day in December, had incredible lighting.
This is a short outing that most will likely enjoy, but children, in particular, will get a kick out of it. A headlamp is useful for getting through one short dark section, but not required. A cell phone flashlight works as well.
Take exit 246 off of I-15, and head south toward the signed Mojave Preserve on Kelbaker Rd. Reset your odometer as you turn onto Kelbaker Road from the highway off-ramp.
Follow Kelbaker Road south toward Kelso for 19.5 miles to a side road on each side of the road. Turn LEFT (north) here. The road is generally good an passable by a carefully driven 2wd vehicle. There are quite a few rougher side roads. Stay on the main road at all junctions.
5 miles from the paved road is the trailhead and small parking area.
From the parking area, follow the jeep road north a couple of minutes to the signed side trail. The lava tubes are a couple of short minutes down the side trail.
The steep metal staircase leads into the longest and most interesting lava tube.
|Left @ 19.5 Miles||
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N35° 12' 59" W115° 45' 05"