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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Pretty crowded and feels a little artificial for my liking with the man made wall. The loop was under maintenance and so was a short in and back hike. We did however scramble up the hills behind the dam which was a lot of fun and made for some great afternoon views.

rock climbing
1 day ago

This was one fun trail with family. Multiple peaks overlooking Salton sea and 360 degrees breath taking views. Passing the mine and walking counterclockwise in the loop through the wash back to the parking lot.
I would say an hour and a half hike (walking time).

Did this hike about a month ago in mid-March and it was enjoyable. There isn't a ton of variety in the scenery on the way up the mountain, but the views at the top are great. If you're not spending your time climbing in Joshua Tree, this is a great hike to do, but I enjoyed the flat trail loops in the park that take you up close to the rock formations more than this hike.

hiking
7 days ago

Miles 1-2.5 are moderately strenuous, upgrade out and downgrade return. Thereafter the trail becomes more challenging with steep sections, wide and narrow washes, a steep switchback down to the Oasis from the sign, and nary any shade. Definitely doable in dry weather. Mind the previous comments about distance, heat, and bringing plenty of water. The scenery is awesome.

hiking
9 days ago

Few things in my opinion - "wind in the desert can be a bonus", meaning it can make it a cooler hike, and helpful (gusts to 20 mph are just fine)l. This hike is 9 miles RT - about 2.5 miles of this hike are a bit boring admittedly, but the rest is quite scenic. The steep "sketchy trail" at Lost Palms area is a challenge - There are maybe 30 Fan Palms down there in the steep canyon. Finding and negotiating the small loop down in the steep canyon is vague, and requires moderate bouldering skills, and maybe a GPS. More than 20-30% of folks wont't be able to do the short loop at Lost Palms, though this should not deter one from going down there if you can make it. It is steep coming back up from Lost Palms as well. Make sure to take enough water (you will be sorry if you don't - respect the desert). Lastly, do hike Mastedon Peak near the trail head, it's one of the two main highlights of the hike, an should not be missed.

A loop in and around the exposed granite of Joshua Tree. Minimal scrambling, somewhat crowded.

A lake Oasis in the middle of the desert. Crazy, no? Definitely do this.

Not the most exciting hike. You walk along a path through a groove of cholla cacti. They have informational pamphlets which were out during our trip, unfortunately. Be careful near the cacti.

hiking
11 days ago

Ranger at visitor center commented that this hike is at lower elevation than most other hikes inside the park. It therefore is hotter.

hiking
14 days ago

Loved this hike! It was a short and steep hike with absolutely beautiful views all the way! I would say this is nature’s stair master

hiking
14 days ago

I imagine this hike is most pleasant outside of the summer months. We completed Ryan Mountain on April 5 when it was between 82 and 85 degrees, just about perfect weather.

The hike itself is pretty manageable. We saw people of nearly all ages and abilities making the trip. There's nothing particularly technical, just a solid climb up and a quick jaunt back down.

I will say, in terms of expectations, know that Ryan Mountain's peak isn't the one clearly seen from the trailhead. It'll look like a pretty normal ascent at the outset but the trail actually wraps around and snakes upward near the back of the mountain you see at the beginning. If you have this understanding, you should be able to pace yourself just fine and earn a wonderful view up top.

Very scenic hike on Joshua tree. Ample parking. Bathroom at trailhead. Wide well maintained trail. Very enjoyable hike.

hiking
18 days ago

short and relaxing! awesome views and not crowded!

The view from the top is well worth the challenge getting there. Take many breaks if needed but keep pushing to the top!

Easy. Not as great as Hidden Valley Trail. There weren't as many cool boulder structures to scramble on. And for awhile at the beginning you're kind of fenced into this narrow trail- and we were behind people slower than us. But, it was cool to see the dam at the end and the wildlife there. And everyone still enjoyed it. (Went with kids ages 12-6).

Easy. Fun for the kids ages 6-12. They loved scrambling up the boulders and the interesting scenery.

hiking
21 days ago

we only had one afternoon to check out this park as we were staying with family while on vacation in palms springs. Great views and some interesting old mining memorabilia and debris. Very cool hike. wish we had the time to hike to the oasis. Not shaded so wear sun screen, and bring covering: hat, lightweight long sleeve, etc.

hiking
21 days ago

Probably the best short trail I've ever encountered. Especially off-season when it offers both solitude and amazing views!

We did this an hour before sunset and it was delightfully empty. There were lots of beautiful rock formations, lush flora and distant landscapes to look at. I found it much more interesting than some of the other trails. It was long enough to be a satisfying workout and short enough to not be tiring.

on Ryan Mountain Trail

23 days ago

The views at the top are rewarding. Hiked with a 6 & 9 year old back in October.

Overhyped? Uninteresting? Wow. Some people just don’t open their eyes. Don’t listen to naysayers. This hike is a gem.

hiking
24 days ago

Very short hike but nice views and not too crowded.

24 days ago

Really crowded and parking was tough. A nice hike and fun to see water.

hiking
24 days ago

Beautiful and great for the kids.

It was nice. I can recomend it to palm lovers.

Easy trail with a lot of loose sand. The trail was being worked in when we visited so it turned out to be a .8 mike in and out walk because half the loop was closed. The water in the lake was low, but still pretty once we got to the dam.

hiking
25 days ago

Great hike out and back to one of the highest points in the park. Well traveled and easy to follow trail. Gentle upward climb to some spectacular views.

Nice, easy hike to a beautiful desert pond formed by a dam built many years ago.

Fun little lasso trail. Be careful with the narrow/slippery trails while climbing in elevation during the loop portion.

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