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.

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Better for trail running than hiking. I took my young two daughters so it was a good challenge for us. No shade until the oasis.

The actual "pine city" part of this trail is not indicated on the trail itself so you will most likely overshoot it. The trail is, as mentioned above, longer than posted, but not that hard. (Closer to 2 miles each way). Overall nice but I wish we could have found the old mineshafts. Great trail for plant life. A lot of low lying colorful plants. (August)

13 days ago

I love this trail. It’s very well maintained for being rated moderate. I was disappointed because I didn’t see any water at the oasis but the palms are beautiful there.

hiking
14 days ago

breathtaking views. started early and saw no one on the way up. Did start seeing the late risers in the way down. Windy at the top the day we went, so be prepared for that.

Such a unique place. Challenging but fun hike, we went late morning. It was about 101 when we set out and before we hit the half way point we turned around because of the temps. Back at the car it was 107 and even though we had plenty of water, there were parts of the trail without any shade and we were starting to overheat. Aside from that we really enjoyed this spot and will make a return trip very soon and head out early for sunrise. The mountains and rock formations are amazing here and you’ll have plenty of photo ops in the canyons. Pack out what you pack in... dirt road is a bear coming down Painted Canyon Rd. Be ready for some major vibrations for about 5 miles of unpaved road. Best done in a truck, your pretty luxury car will cry coming here.

Did this trail in July, hot but not insufferable. Well maintained- going up is harder cardiovascularly while going down tougher on legs. Views are great at the top. Highly recommended

The Vista Trail was very easy & very short, 1.25m of pretty flat hike with little immediate scenery, and then BAM! you get to the vista and wow, you're looking across miles and miles of gorgeousness. Did this hike based on the distance & the glowing words of the reviewer below me, and took the wash loop back. This was both a blessing & a curse (no fault of the reviewer). Dropping into the ruggedness of the S. end of the wash was incredible, after having so little to see on most of the vista trail. But after getting out of the rugged portion into the wash it was less enchanting. It was a v. hot day, and in the wash there was little breeze. The last 1/3 of the wash is all loose sand and slightly inclined, so it was a pretty wretched hot dry when-is-this-going-to-end slog. Other than the sand part, which was more tiring than expected, there is nothing difficult about this hike, it's a terrific off-the-beaten-path gem and I absolutely plan to go back. I think starting from Queen Canyon Mine might be the key, if heat is a factor.

trail running
23 days ago

Very nice trail for running. Some tough points due to elevation but overall it’s fun and safe. The oasis end point is absolutely gorgeous.

A lovely, short hike that offers some pretty views along the way and an oasis at the end.
Having started with the Ryan Mountain hike in the morning, we only got here at around noon and hiked out at about the same time that everyone else was coming back. As one would expect, it gets really hot in June (110+) but the hike isn't long and the oasis offers some shadow to rest in before heading back, making it doable even in summer. As always when hiking in a desert, just make sure that you carry a lot of water and wear a hat.

Was a great hike yesterday here. Definitely a hidden treasure to admire close to the Imperial Valley. Take plenty of water, gloves, hiking light shoes with good traction, sun block, snacks and a beer or two to enjoy up on the canyon. I guess i learned yesterday that the north trail is called The Ropes, and the east trail is ladder Canyon trail. I recommend to go east trail and follow rock arrow into hidden canyon. You can go the other way also, half way there is a hill that will be safer to go down than up for some. I'm going back for sure; Enjoy and stay safe!!

hiking
1 month ago

This hike offers a great desert experience, just know that there are no Joshua Trees in this part of the park. That said, the hike has some beautiful views of the desert as well as an enjoyable (if small) oasis at the end. We did the hike in early June and knowing that the temperatures would easily get to 110+, we aimed to start as early as possible. In the end, we only managed to hit the trail at around 7am but got back to the car comfortably just before noon even with a detour to the Mastodon Mine.
There is a sign posted close to the trail-head, which warns people that hiking out into the desert could be life-threatening this time of the year, and without bringing enough water, that is very true. We carried almost a gallon each and drank most of it by the time we got back, so if you're planning on doing this hike in summer, make sure you are well prepared and start early in the morning - there is no shadow or water anywhere along the trail. The trail itself is fairly level for most part with only a short, steep descent/ascent to/from the canyon with the palms but, in summer, the heat does make this a fairly strenuous endeavor. Overall, I would definitely recommend the hike, just know your limits and don't even think about doing it in summer without bringing lots of water!
As for wildlife, we saw plenty of rabbits, some antelope squirrels, a kingsnake, and a bunch of reptiles.

hiking
1 month ago

A short hike that can get tough due to the temperature. Beginning of June, it was already in excess of 110 degrees during the day, so an early start is definitely recommended here. On the plus side, the trail is to a large extent in the shadow if you hike in the morning, and the 360 view from the top is definitely worth the effort. Just make sure that you carry enough water and wear a hat!

This is a great hike, but as others have said, it isn't marked at all. We relied on information from other hikers and Alltrails to figure out where to go. The ladder and ropes are fun and the hike is mostly pretty. The upper loop to the top of the big canyon is completely exposed. We got an incredibly late start, so this part baked me, but the canyon was worth it. As a bonus, we saw a little gray fox. The road in was rough, but ok for a regular car.

Definitely coming back to this hike, lots of trails to explore.

I would recommend coming early to avoid high temperatures (it reached 112 when we went last week) and bring plenty of water.

hiking
1 month ago

Definitely strenuous. Especially in the summer. Lots of folks turned back because they knew they didn’t have enough water. The view is amazing from the top. Not for the faint of heart.

hiking
1 month ago

This was a challenging hike! I agree with the Park Rangers that it's strenuous. The full sun and elevation climb make it a tough trail but it's a great workout. The lower valley trails are easier and prettier.

hiking
1 month ago

Best hike for the view. Its all uphill, so bring water and a hat, as the whole trail is exposed. Its rated as strenuous in the NP guide, but I think thats too keep the tourists at bay. I can see this being a hike people have to be rescued from....

Short hike, but uphill, but once at the top, you get a beautiful 360 degree view of Joshua tree NP and beyond. Some annoying tourists were at the top flying a drone, which was incredibly annoying so please respect the land and your fellow hikers. The constant buzzing and whipping of drones is incredibly distracting and annoying. Sorry I don't care about the dumb youtube video you are going to make or your instagram likes on a selfie of you. STOP IT. (enough ranting :} ).

A nice hike with lots of views. ..and steps. A moderate hike climbing, but easy climb down , and took only about 2.5 hours round trip including many photos and scenic pauses.

hiking
2 months ago

This trail was awesome even this late in the season. I hit the trail early and was back at my car by 1145. The trail rating is moderate is correct in my opinion. There are sections of climbing/bouldering at the canyon entrance and exit. You are also exposed for most of the trail with no water and very limited shade until you reach the oasis. Pictures don’t do this place justice. It was beautiful. I did submit a recording. It accidentally paused it for .7 if a mile. I also didn’t make the full loop the end of the trail so you’re looking at 7.5 miles easy round trip. Be prepared for heat, have water and enjoy! As an experienced hiker this trail was not a waste of time. Not as challenging as some, but there is more to a hike that elevation gain etc.. absolutely beautiful and highly recommend.

hiking
2 months ago

Really enjoyed this trail. Hiked it Memorial Day weekend, which was warm but not crazy hot. It took us about 90 mins to get to the Willow Hole, taking plenty of pictures along the way. So cool to see all the different types of plants in the desert. Enjoyed having the shady area to rest in before heading back. We saw some sort of reptile rustling around in the sand and leaves near the willows. Pretty cool. Also saw a jackrabbit on the way back. The way back was a little quicker since it was warmer and we wanted to get back to the car. Bring plenty of water and protect yourself from the sun.

On the easy side of moderate. Hiked this Memorial Day weekend. Great length for a warm day. Very cool to see the oasis pop up amongst all the rocks. Nice shady spot for a break before heading back to the car. Sad to see tons of people going beyond the sign that marks the sensitive biological area and tells people not to go beyond it. :(

This was a beautiful hike, saw lots of lizards, road runners, jack rabbits and almost stepped on a beautiful snake (no, I’m not scared of snakes and God’s creations are all beautiful in their own way) so that got the morning started off well. Jeff had read on another review to hike the loop going counter clockwise....it wasn’t until our hike DOWN that I understood why. If we would have hiked going clockwise we may have still been out there trying to finish. It would have been uphill most of the way. Don’t go left...go right...go counter clockwise. Plus take plenty of water and start early in the morning. The reason it’s not getting 5 stars is because the trail wasn’t marked very well. For as popular as it claims to be, there needs to be good, straightforward signs letting the hikers know if they are going the correct way. Also, there wasn’t any warning about the little chat/gravel you have to walk in. May sound picky on my part but still, a little heads up would have been welcomed. Would I recommend this hike? YES...but remember go counter clockwise and have fun. Oh and don’t forget to watch where you are stepping

great 3 mile total hike. 2 hours, did it at about 8am to make sure we weren't overwhelmed with the heat. As mentioned by other users, entry is free and parking is readily available.

2 months ago

Great trail. We did this in June and the weather was very hot. Just make sure to bring a hat and lots of water with you. Sunscreen and sunglasses are also necessary since there's hardly any shade. It's all well worth the beautiful view at the top! Also make sure to not get lost, we went on the wrong turn on our way back and added an extra mile to it lol grab a map from the camping services center or just keep an eye out on your phone for directions!

Love this app

As you start the hike you will come across a “fork” in the trail marked by stones gathered together in the Shape of a

2 months ago

Beautiful hike! Can’t wait to bring my kids on this one!

hiking
2 months ago

Loved this hike! I did it twice it was so much fun and full of little trails to explore. A must do when you visit the area!

Beautiful 360-degree views await you at the summit! It’s not too difficult of a hike if you have proper footwear, sufficient water and sun protection. Go early in the morning and bring some snacks to enjoy at the top.

I really enjoyed this trail. It had many different, rocky paths, and you had good views of old mining camps and abandoned buildings.

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