Explore Joshua Tree - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Joshua Tree Map
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If you are coming from Cottonwood visitor center, when you see the trailhead for Skull Rock, the Skull Rock can actually be seen from the road, without even doing the loop trail. As mentioned in the comments below, a good portion of the trail is just walking on a paved road through campsites, so keep that in mind. Other than that, it was a fairly easy trail.

hiking
13 hours ago

Short hike with great payoff (on a clear day). Rainy and muddy when we went but still worth it. Lots of rocky stairs and patches of mud so boots would be helpful if the ground is wet.

hiking
no shade
rocky
scramble
1 day ago

Probably more like 3.5 stars- lovely scenery but not mind blowing in terms of the destination (the oasis). Low-moderate difficultly- Not too many large changes in elevation. A nice outing though.

hiking
5 days ago

Cool area. Parking is weird. I would park at the campground.

Great view of Joshua Tree when you reach the top. Watch out for high winds!

Excellent rock formations at the base, a moderate hike with few trees and sweeping valley views. Great way to get some altitude in a short amount of time. Hiked on New Years Eve in blistering wind. The hiking experience on the way up overtops the payoff at the top, so enjoy the journey!

Short, a nice first stretch of the legs after a long drive to the park.

hiking
8 days ago

Honestly it was a really great hike I went on Sunday and there was a light traffic of people, however it was still extremely enjoyable. I’ll admit I actually got off the path a few times, so I had to use this apps map to help me get back on course. Going down to the actual palm trees was a challenge, but it was worth it. There are many beautiful scenarios along the way so I recommend doing this hike.

hiking
8 days ago

Crowded, nothing too special. View was mediocre not really a Joshua tree vibe.

hiking
12 days ago

Best part about this hike is climbing around on all of the different rock formations. We spent hours scrambling around and trying to get to the top of each pile of rocks. So much fun, and an experience very unique to Joshua Tree NP.

hiking
12 days ago

Very nice hike. Good views from the top, and challenging enough to make you work a little for it. We trail ran down which was super fun on all of rocks and “stairs”. Would definitely do again, but probably run the entire trail.

hiking
13 days ago

A nice, quiet trail that gives a good feel for the landscape of JT. There are no spectacular views here by any means, but it’s a nice trail to walk, it’s (relatively) well marked, and has quite a few other trails nearby if you’d like to get some more elevation. We did not find it quite as solitary as some other reviews, but your mileage may vary depending on the time of day and season.

Perfect short hike that provides great views of the surrounding valley and mountains. Top of the mountain has a great stop and overlook for pictures. Challenging due to hiking uphill the whole way, but very worth it. If it’s summer, definitely pack water and sunscreen.

hiking
14 days ago

Great short hike with amazing views!

hiking
14 days ago

Went up early January 2018. Sunrise at around 6:50am, it took us about 35 minutes to get to the top, the hike is fairly easy as it’s not particularly rocky and the steps are wide and flat. Does get very windy and cold at the top (~20F) around that time. Great 360* view although not a lot of Joshua trees

Uhmm hmmmm. A good part of this loop was walking thru the parking lots of a campground? And right along the road. If you have really young kids it’s a good one.

The road to the trail was closed today.

hiking
17 days ago

A lovely hike but very steep small section to get into the oasis. We returned via the Mastadon loop, and there were lovely flowers and many hummingbirds. However the very end to rerun to Cottonwood Springs parking is confusing as the area was closed after flooding.

hiking
18 days ago

Great flat trail. Well marked and the map on AllTrails app really helped to stay on trail. We started around 9am and did not see a single other hiker on the trail. It is nice quiet and peaceful.

Great walk, lots of variety, ups and downs. It;s a bit of a clamber down the canyon at the end, but not too bad. We took our 7 and 9 yo and did the whole thing in about 4 hours. Definitely worth the hike. Views of the salton see on the way

hiking
19 days ago

I love this hike. When you get to the top, the silence is amazing. You can hear a single car approach from miles away. The views of the dancing Joshua Trees are captivating. I can't wait to go back! (Sept. 2000)

hiking
21 days ago

Quite possibly my favorite hike at Joshua Tree! Challenging enough to break a sweat and really feel accomplished when you reach the stunning 360 views at the top! Be sure to bring layers and sturdy shoes, in the winter it can get cold and even have ice/snow on some parts.

I just did up to the mine then climbed to the top of the hill behind it. Really nice secluded hike for a generally packed Joshua tree np. Very peaceful, the mine is fenced off but kinda cool since it’s preserved well. Climb to the top of the hill behind it for a SICK view of the valley. Great for a morning hike and not too challenging!

hiking
22 days ago

Loved doing something a little different to get above the rock formations and see wilderness as far as your eyes can see. Went early and had no trouble with crowds. Lots of kids with families on the trail, which was impressive!

trail running
22 days ago

This took us about an hour going a slow jogging pace - you never really feel the elevation gain because it’s so beautiful that you’re distracted! Insanely beautiful and highly recommend as a flatter, but just as beautiful mid-length trail!

on Ryan Mountain Trail

23 days ago

Busy, very chilly on Dec 29, and strenuous, but you don’t have to work very long to get to the simply stunning 360° views. If you only have a daytrip, consider making it your first hike and the other scenic loops will seem easy.

Our first trail in JT and a delightful one. We started on the south trail and it was a beautiful meander into the backside maze. Must do trail that took about 2.5hrs to go 5 miles. Nothing hard or strenuous about this hike and it has great diversity of view

hiking
24 days ago

Hiked in November 2017. Short but steep - great views at the top.

hiking
24 days ago

Great view but monotonous and busy.

hiking
24 days ago

Hiked in November 2017. We wandered among the unusual rock formations of Joshua Tree. Not really a hike, but part nature trail, part scramble. Take your first aid kit - if you are scrambling, the rocks are sharp!

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