off road driving
Out of 20 of the National Parks I've been to, this is in my top 3. The hikes here were so quiet, and beautiful. I opted to stay at a less occupied campground which was a great decision. The sky at night was unbelievable. Id never seen so many stars in my whole life.
We did this trail starting in 29 palms and then drove south instead of how the trail suggests. There is mostly long stretches of smooth sand where you can travel very quickly. Once you get into the mountains, it becomes a bit more tricky but still quite doable. There is only one true moderate portion and that would be near the beginning (if you are driving north), once you are beyond that most of it is a cake walk. There are several mines (that we missed) before you exit the park that I would suggest going to. Plenty of scenic views as well. You do need a 4x4 and relatively high clearance for this trail. There appears to be remnants of flash flooding and river beds that you drive through so keep in mind if you go during the rain season. This was completed in a Dodge powerwagon.
The trail to the mill is a mix of desert trail and walking in washes. This means quite a lot of trudging through heavy sand. This, and a general lack of shade makes what would otherwise be an easy walk a bit more strenuous. The mill is a pretty cool destination, but the "trail" is a bit of a letdown.
Very nice trail, but longer than indicated. At the trail head it said 3mi (appr. 4.5km) to the oasis but this app recorded 6.5km and we didn't even finish the loop at the end, so back and forth this was 13km or even more if you complete the loop around the oasis. Be prepared for the heat and start in the morning, there is no shade at all and bring enough water and snacks.
Wish I could've spent more time here!! A mere few hours was not enough time to see all that Joshua Tree has to offer. It has a lot of unique, desert views unlike anything that I've seen before. Bring lots of water and dress for the heat!
So beautiful and a wonderful desert hike! Just make sure to bring more than lots of water because you will dehydrate super fast in the heat, regardless of hiking or not. Also, if you bring your dog, be careful and know that they are only allowed on certain trails.
This is a fun little drive for anyone who wants to get off the main paved roads and away from the bigger crowds in Joshua Tree. I took my Jeep on this road and had an awesome time. Some of the number markers for the self-guided tour pamphlet were either hard to read or missing, but if you read the literature and pay attention to the landscape, you can figure out what they are talking about in the various places, and learn some cool things along the way. Fun drive, highly recommended :)
This is a great option for a moderate hike in Joshua Tree. However, this app is misleading - dogs are NOT allowed. You risk a ticket from the ranger if you bring your dog anywhere outside of the campgrounds in a national park. I have done the trail to the mine and back (4 miles r/t) several times, but just recently did the full loop and it was WORTH IT. Definitely throw in those extra two miles of you have the time and energy. The views are great and since most people stop at the mine, you have 4 miles of relative solitude on a great trail.