Virtual Guidebook to El Camino Real
Central Carrizo Plain
Carrizo Plain National Monument California


The center of the Carrizo Plain is very flat, with the Caliente and Temblor Ranges rising abruptly on either side. For many years it was planted in wheat and the "plowing limit" can still be seen as a long continuous scar along the base of the hills. It is now grazing land, and in wet years covered with wildflowers.

Outcrops of sandstone occur near the western edge of the Carrizo Plain. One of them, known as Painted Rock, contains huge pictographs made by ancient indigenous peoples in its womb-like central alcove. Unfortunately the rock art has been heavily vandalized.



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(December 31, 1969)


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(December 31, 1969)


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Hilltop on the west edge of the Carrizo Plain

(March 20, 2005)


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Sheep grazing on the Carrizo Plain

(March 20, 2005)


Next Locality: Southern Carrizo Plain