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Excellent introductory hike to Joshua Tree. Includes a small bit of fun rock scrambling. This is one of the more popular hikes and for good reason - you get a sampling of the wonderful rock formations, boulder piles, wildlife, vegetation and more that Joshua Tree NP is known for. Trail is well marked. We were lucky to see plenty of water at the dam. Great for families, newbie hikers and people short on time.

hiking
4 days ago

Visit here and you might miss the feature that gives this rock formation its name... Cap Rock. At the beginning of the trail, turn north and you will see it! Then complete the loop where there are several rest benches to relax, and enjoy the wonderful world of Joshua Tree!

The Barker Dam Trail is a great introduction into the wonderful world of Joshua Tree. Seasonally there may be water at the dam and the ancient Cahuilla petroglyphs are always a treat. And if it's an exceptionally good day, there might be bighorn sheep cautiously crossing the trail!

Yes, the road to the parking lot is still washed out, but we really enjoyed this trail, beginning from the Cottonwood Campground and starting with the upper half of the Mastodon Loop trail. Our hike was 10 miles, 4.5 hours with a lunch break at the bottom of the oasis (you have to go down into the oasis if you can do it). The was some water in the oasis, maybe due to a bit of rain last week. The weather has been cool so we only saw a few lizards on our way back but also saw a fox and a jack rabbit closer to the campground area.

We did this hike leaving into the Lost Palm Oasis trail because the road to lost palm trail head is washed out. I'm glad we did this anyway, the trail is great. However, it does add about 2 miles to the Lost Palm Oasis out and back hike for a total of 10 miles.

Well worth the stop and very scenic.

We've done this hike many times during different seasons. Great short hike to the dam. We went in March, there was a small amount of water, LOTS of mosquitoes. We went early in the morning and we saw plenty of frogs as well.

hiking
7 days ago

This was definitely moderate. The first half is all uphill and a tough cardiovascular workout. I'm 61 and I used hiking poles. I highly recommend them. It is only a mile and a half up so that is good. The top offers a fantastic view. Coming down is tougher on the joints for those of us over a certain age, but not bad if you're careful.
Younger folks will get through this easily.

Walked it with our three-year-old on foot and 1-year-old in a stroller. Had to stroller-carry at points, but it was manageable. Water at the dam was low and stagnant, but my wife got some great pictures of the rocks reflecting in the pool. Beautiful walk through the Joshua Trees at sunset.

I give this a 5 even though it was rather difficult to navigate this past weekend. We ended up getting a bit lost because the areas that were flooded ended up looking like they could be part of the trail. However, such is nature and we still got to experience the beautiful landscape. We started from the Cottonwood Springs campground so we used that as our landmark as we navigated back.

My boyfriend and I did this hike December ‘17 and it wasn’t too bad. The beginning was a long stretch across the valley but then once you started hitting the side of the mountain that’s where the elevation came in. It looks over the desert plain and if you’re lucky, it can be eerily too quiet staring out into the vastness. Once we rounded the mountain we arrived at the mine where we had lunch and it was about 2 miles back to the trail head from that point if I remember correctly.

If you’re looking for a quick easy hike, this is it. There’s an actual dam and the landscape is beautiful.

Super short and easy hike well worth the stop. We went at dusk and enjoyed beautiful lighting by sunset and an uncrowded trail. Nice informative placards and a cool unexpected petroglyph stop along the way as well. The dam itself is pretty cool and seeing water and lush trees in the middle of the desert was pretty awesome.

Great hike. Started at about 9am and still plenty of parking. (Very limited parking so get there early) Did the loop counter clockwise which gets you the steep upgrade climb at about mile 4.5. Great views and not very crowded. Bring plenty of water. Would def do this one again.

Crowded hike with expansive views. Really nicely constructed steps! Easy to navigate and a cool variety of terrain and sights.

Really nice to see water in the middle of the desert, and so much wildlife around it! There are also a lot of rocks for climbing and on top of one of them I saw one of the most beautiful sunsets of my life.

hiking
17 days ago

This hike is full of steps 1.5 miles up! Once you get to the top there’s an elevation sign perfect for a photo opp. It gives you a good workout, but is not too strenuous. Highly recommended!

A short walk with petroglyphs, easy-to-access climbing, animals, and informational plaques about the wildlife.

hiking
21 days ago

Great place to bring the family for a hike. The view at the top is amazing.

This was an awesome trail but be cautious the trail is not visible and will need to use the app for guidance. Make sure you have a battery charger backup.

Great hike. We did the Loop counterclockwise, which gave us some amazing views while making the climb up to the Mine.

Good hike going through the rocks and culminating at the old dam (which still looks as functioning). Very nice opportunity for rock climbing along the way

Amazing hike and best place to visit in Joshua Tree. We really didn’t expect there to be water here but there is, an oasis in Joshua Tree! Go early to get a parking spot, later in afternoon too crowded to even get a spot!

Great hike!

Very easy hike and what a view on the water.. Great.. but so busy on Thanksgiving week-end

hiking
23 days ago

I did it yesterday.. A bit harder on the way up, I was a bit worry for my knees on the return, but incredibly easy since I took my time. Was easier to go down than up.. Using walking poles helped me a lot..

hiking
24 days ago

A hike during the night so not able to view all that this hike can offer. But overall very easy and although again without any proper markers, there is no fear of losing the path anytime.

As the previous comment goes, forget the trail, just wander around in the desert! I had so much fun out here. I used landmarks to find my way around, check my recording, I gave up trying to follow any route. I didn’t find any Well, but there were a couple of small sources of water in the valleys. But I took 3 litres and that was more than enough.

Coyotes were howling in the distance, and I started the trail under a full moon in the morning to witness a stunning sunrise. I’ll be doing this again soon!

I always followed in “Keep calm and believe in alltrails”. But what happened here. Hiking a 1200 ft in 1.2 miles is not easy. Make it moderate atleast if not siding towards hard. But 5 stars througout. Views begin as soon as 0.2-0.3 miles in and once you reach the top, you have 360 degree views all around. I saw sunset at one side and turned around to see full moon coming up. Awesome.

Moderate hike, fantastic views. Definitely recommend hiking clockwise to take advantage of the view

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