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large desert recreational area in southern California, U.S., lying east of San Diego, south of Palm Springs, and west of the Salton Sea. Encompassing more than 935 square miles (2,420 square km) of the Colorado Desert, it is the largest state park in the 48 contiguous states. Its name is derived from that of the Spanish explorer Juan Bautista de Anza (who visited the area in 1774) and a Spanish word meaning "lamb." The park, established in 1933, is headquartered in Borrego Springs.