Doran Canyon

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5/5 (23 reviews)
Barstow, California (San Bernardino County)
Last Updated: 01/02/2024
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Trail Information

Highlights

Altitude Category Icon Altitude
Desert Category Icon Desert
Ghost Town Category Icon Ghost Town
Iconic Category Icon Iconic
Mine Category Icon Mine
Mud Category Icon Mud
Overland Category Icon Overland
Rock Category Icon Rock
Sand Category Icon Sand
Doran Canyon of the Odessa / Doran Loop of the Mojave Desert is one of the most difficult off-road rock crawling trails near Barstow, California next to the Calico Ghost Town. When traveling this area, you will notice that the mostly desert landscape is very different than its counterpart Odessa Canyon. Even though these two off-road trails are near the same in difficulty throughout the main body of the trail. Doran has one big difference when it comes to the trail drive, that is "Doran Gatekeeper". Doran's Gatekeeper is an insanely difficult off-road obstacle with rocks larger than your vehicle. The holes between the rocks are so large that it is common for people to put their vehicle on its side between the rocks. It's a spectacle to watch extreme off-road enthusiasts try this legendary obstacle as the rocks look like they are swallowing the vehicle whole. It is common for a Jeep Wrangler or Toyota to disappear in the gap only to receive massive body damage when trying to recover the vehicle out of the holes. But the rest of the trail is no walk in the park, with several large waterfalls and many off-camber tight areas, Doran Canyon will test your driving skills and vehicle to its limits.

Trail Difficulty and Assessment

Trail Navigation

Doran Canyon is a rock crawling trail for the experienced drivers with built rigs. The trail offers a 6-foot waterfall, a narrow off-camber canyon just wider than your Jeep, and the hardest obstacle in the area... Doran Canyon's Gatekeeper. There is no right vehicle for Doran Canyon. Short wheelbase Jeeps will be able to maneuver the tight obstacles better while the longer wheelbase vehicles like JKU's and Toyotas will do better on some of the waterfalls. Either way, there is something on this trail that will be hard for almost any offroad vehicle.

Trail Reviews

5/5 (23)
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Official Crew
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142950
Open
Rated 5/5
Visited: 01/02/2024

Another good trip on Doran Canyon. The Aug rains moved a lot of rocks around on the trail, but that is normal for this trail. The main obstacles are all still there in their glory. It looks like Cal Trans went through and stacked a lot of rocks at each obstacle. Made it so easy that even the TJ open/open was able to climb right up without any struggle. All in all this is a fun trail like aways.
Trail Review: Doran Canyon - Josh Noesser
Trail Review: Doran Canyon - Josh Noesser
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1050
Open
Rated 5/5
Visited: 12/30/2023
Difficulty Accuracy: Spot On

Wow, this trail does not disappoint. A lot of washed out sections make for a lot of off camber water falls. We came down North to South coming up from Odessa. Highly recommend with a good spotter.
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5800
Open
Rated 5/5
Visited: 06/10/2023
Difficulty Accuracy: Spot On

Never disappoints! Little rougher now but nothing major. Rating is still spot on! Lots of fun!!!
Trail Review: Doran Canyon - Joe
Trail Review: Doran Canyon - Joe
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400
Open
Rated 5/5
Visited: 03/25/2023
Difficulty Accuracy: Spot On

Always fun on this trail never lets us down great trail to test gear and skills for harder trails
Trail Review: Doran Canyon - Mike
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Official Crew
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142950
Open
Rated 5/5
Visited: 03/22/2023

Same old trail. Still a ton of fun
Trail Review: Doran Canyon - Josh Noesser

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