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    Dana Egreczky reviewed Andreas Canyon

    almost 2 years ago

    This is a great trail and well worth the entrance fee, which covers all three Indian canyons (Palm, Andreas, Murray). You could do at least part of the best trails in each canyon in a day but you will need more time if you want to spend more time on the available trails.

    Andreas Canyon houses the second-largest-in-the-world California Palm Oasis and it is beautiful. We had to wear ponchos because it started to rain and we could not complete the trail because it was flooded in the lower regions.

    We were disappointed that we could not continue, and I hope someday the Indian rangers put some primitive rock bridges across some of the areas that tend to flood so hikers can cross even when the stream is flowing more heavily.

    Our disappointment quickly disappeared as we left however. As we hiked out and then drove out, we saw SIX RAINBOWS in different places. I think that number is more than the total number of rainbows I have seen in my life.

    I would have given this trail a four, but we could not complete it due to flooding. We plan to try this trail at another time.

    A word to the wise: wait for rainwater to come and go before you pay to access this trail.

    Dana Egreczky completed Andreas Canyon

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Palm Canyon Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    A great trail and well worth the entrance fee, which covers all three Indian canyons (Palm, Andreas, Murray). You could do at least part of the best trails in each canyon in a day but you will need more time if you want to spend more time on the available trails.

    The canyon itself is fabulous. It is a natural oasis ... and the largest grouping of California Palms in the world. The temperature drops as you descend into the canyon thanks to the shade provided by the trees and the cool water running through the stream bed.

    The full Palm Canyon trail is quite long, and our time was limited, so we planned to do Palm Canyon Trail to Victor Trail and loop back to the parking lot. However, thanks to the generous rains the area received this year, the junction of the two trails was washed out and we could not proceed as planned. We went back the way we came and counted ourselves lucky to see the great oasis again.

    However, even a primitive stone crossing might have helped us continue our trek, but there was no way we could cross without getting soaked.

    A word to the wise: rain may restrict the amount of hiking you can do but the fee is constant regardless of your ability to access the trails you want. Wait until flooding has subsided before you try to hike these trails.

    Dana Egreczky completed Palm Canyon Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Hole-in-the-Wall to Mid Hills Loop

    almost 2 years ago

    We marked the start of this trail once we got out of Banshee Canyon and walked in the opposite direction of the rings. We didn't do the entire trail because the sun was setting, but we thoroughly enjoyed the part that we were able to do. The part we did do was very well-marked with ground stakes.

    it is easy walking ... watch out for the horse poop. We encountered only two other people on the trail, but we did see a jackrabbit and as we returned to the parking lot, we saw free-range horses that were kind enough to submit to our taking their pictures.

    Definitely a trail worth doing.

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Teutonia Peak Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    This hike takes you through what is the densest Joshua Tree forest in the world. It's a great ... and easy ... walk and very lightly traveled. There is only a slight incline going out until you get to the end where you can do some rock scrambling up a ridge and see some astonishing vistas.

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Hole-in-the-Wall Rings Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    This is a great trail. We started at the end of the parking lot and walked around to Banshee Canyon. Great views. Great rocks. Easy walking.

    The trail gets tougher as the rings get closer. I have done the rings and they are hard mostly because they are spaced quite far apart. I strongly suggest that you do not do this trail by yourself in case you fall off the rings.

    If you feel you cannot do the rings, hike the trail anyway and do a in-and-back trip. You won't regret it.

    And don't forget to check the echo chamber that is Banshee Canyon.

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Wall Street Mill Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    This is a very flat trail that runs through the Wonderland Wash and has little diversity in terms of biology or geology. And the Wall Street Mill was a bit of a disappointment. Visible from a distance by way of a very tall windmill used as a water pump (we think), the site was easy to spot but not very photogenic or informative.

    More interesting was a side trail that led to an abandoned building that was quite large at one point. It's hard to miss because it is ... HOT PINK! It is easily visible from the main trail. There was no information on site, but an online search after the hike indicated it was the remains of a rather large ranch called the 'Wonderland Ranch.' Some very demanding Steller's Jays were hoping we would drop some food, but we were careful not to encourage their dependency.

    Dana Egreczky completed Wall Street Mill Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Desert Queen Mine Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky completed Desert Queen Mine Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Desert Queen Mine Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Pine City and Pine City Canyon Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    This is one of three trails that can be accessed from the parking lot on Desert Queen Mine Road, an unpaved road in the north half of the park. The other two trails are the Desert Queen Mine trail and the Lucky Boy Vista – Queen Mine Loop trail, which is a much longer loop that includes the first two.

    This hike is rather longer than the sign in the parking lot indicates. Someone had changed the original official length on the trail head sign from 1.1 mile to 1.9 mile by scratching a little square on the one to make it a nine. But our GPS indicated that the length of the trail from the trail head to Pine Canyon/Pine City was 2.3 or 2.4 miles. Much longer than stated and almost five miles for out and back.

    The first part of the trail was very flat and in spite of the trail’s name, we found only two pine trees along the way. As we approached Pine Canyon, the view was much more interesting. We were able to look down into a large gash in the rock that was, we think, Pine Canyon. This stretched for quite a distance and provided great views.

    We did not go into Pine Canyon so cannot report on that part of this trail.

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Split Rock Loop Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    This is another great nature walk in Joshua Tree Park. Great views of geological features, especially the ‘dikes’ of different colored rocks, formed when hot lava is forcefully injected into cracks in older rocks, that make the rocks look as though they are wearing necklaces.

    Though short and easy, this is one of the most vibrant trails in the park. Great views. Lots of plants. Two small slot canyons. And make sure to do the sidebar walk to ‘Face Rock.’ Facing the rock, it doesn’t look much like a face, but once you pass it and look back on it, it is the perfect profile of a human face.

    I would give this four stars but it’s just too short. I wanted more.

    Dana Egreczky completed Split Rock Loop Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Arch Rock Nature Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    This is an easy short walk that starts at the White Tank Campground. It offers great views of various rock formations and as advertised, of the only naturally occurring arch in the park.

    Best of all, this is the only nature trail in the park that I know focuses on the rock formations and gives passers-by an idea of how the rocks were formed, including explanations of such things as 'cavernous weathering.' All the other informative guides on the trails point out various plants and how they were/are used by indigenous people.

    Keep your eyes open for the trail guide posts ... there are often points where a guide post should be but isn't, and it's easy to get lost on this trail.

    I would rank this trail at four stars except that it is just too short -- I wanted more geology!

    Dana Egreczky completed Arch Rock Nature Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Lost Palms Oasis

    almost 2 years ago

    This trail is in the south end of the park by the Cottonwood Visitor Center. It starts with a short walk through the Cottonwood Palms Oasis near the site of an old mine, which is now contaminated with heavy metals and has been roped off.

    There is a second oasis, the Lost Palm Oasis, at the end of the trail. Hikers can descend into Lost Palms Canyon but it is a rather rigorous hike out.

    About halfway to the Lost Palm Oasis is a side trail that leads to the Mastodon Peak loop. This is generally considered to be a moderate hike, but could be more challenging for the person who is not in peak form.

    In spite of the contaminated entrance and even without the sidebar to Mastodon Peak, the trail up to Lost Palms offers a beautiful walk – a different slice at a ‘wonderland of rocks.’ Plenty of diverse plants, birds. I consider it to be one of the best hikes in the park.

    Since the ride from the north to the south end of the park can take an hour one way, I recommend travelers plan to do the Lost Palm Oasis and Mastodon Peak in the morning and stop at the Cholla Cactus Garden on the way back to the north end of the park, timing arrival for sunset, when the plants look as though they are lighted from within by the setting sun.

    Dana Egreczky completed Lost Palms Oasis

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Cholla Cactus Garden Nature Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    This is a short easy trail that shouldn't be missed.

    There is a boardwalk to keep people from compressing the soil around plant roots and further stressing the cacti. Of course, this trail receives the typical number of idiots who think THEIR picture-taking is more important than the plants' survival, so they leave the boardwalk. Please don’t be one of those troglodytes.

    If YOU are one of those selfish idiots, I hope the cactus gets you but good.

    Be aware that cholla cactus don’t have regular spines, which typically prick the skin and stay on the cactus. Cholla cactus have spines that have evolved barbs that keep the spine in the skin. These ensure that the almost invisible pricker stays in the skin for a long time. These cause a lot more pain than their size would indicate … pangs from annoying to excruciating when that patch of skin is rubbed the wrong way. And they are virtually invisible ... and victims might not even realize they been glochided until the pain strikes.

    For those of you who are not rude enough to leave this or any other trail, I advise you to visit this beautiful area at sunset. When the sun is low in the sky, the cholla glochids, which are virtually transparent, will seem to glow in the sunlight and each cacti will look as though it is outlined in neon lights.

    Dana Egreczky completed Willow Hole Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Willow Hole Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    DO NOT GO ON THIS TRAIL!!!

    This is my favorite trail in the park ... a beautiful example of biological and geological diversity in a desert environment ... and I want to keep it that way! Fortunately, the trail does not appear on the NPS brochure or magazine, and I hope that will keep traffic to a minimum.

    As per the trail map on this website, the Willow Hollow trail splits from the main trail (Boy Scouts) and a sign post provides clear definition at the split. Wait for the sign before you go to the right ... don’t think that some of the other visible trails earlier in the trail lead to Willow Hollow … those actually lead to rock climbing sites.

    The sign along the trail provides mileage information, but like some of the other trails in this park, our tracker indicated the posted distance is incorrect. It states that the Willow Hole trail is a 2.25 mile trail, but it was actually about 4 miles from the split to the end of Willow Hole and back to the sign. So 2.25 miles is neither the one-way nor the round-trip distance.

    After a rain, water begins to flow downhill into the Willow Hollow gully, and provides the occasional moisture that a wide variety of desert plants and animals need to survive. We’re pretty sure we saw coyote tracks in the sand. Birds abound. It also makes the Hollow somewhat cooler than surrounding areas.

    I love this place. STAY AWAY!

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Oasis of Mara Nature Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky completed Oasis of Mara Nature Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Oasis of Mara Nature Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Cap Rock Nature Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Very short trail ... flat and easy. Great picture opportunities.

    Dana Egreczky completed Cap Rock Nature Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Keys View Loop to Inspiration Point Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Not to be missed, even by non-hikers. There is a generous parking lot and a cement walkway that allows access to several viewpoints. I have been there when the air quality was so bad that the view into the valley was greatly restricted. But after the rain and winds that hit the park this week, the view was the clearest we've ever seen.

    If you do nothing else, check out the San Andreas fault, which is easily seen in the valley from the viewing platforms on a clear day.

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Hidden Valley Nature Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    A very short but spectacular hike ... one of my favorites in this park. Great picture opportunities. Spotted a Stellar's Jay on the route. Often very crowded so pcik your visitation time carefully.

    Dana Egreczky completed Hidden Valley Nature Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Fortynine Palms Oasis Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    A wonderful hike, but longer than advertised. NPS literature claims the trail is about 3 miles round-trip, but our tracker placed the length at well over 4 miles. NPS also says the trail is moderately challenging, but for some the stairs will be quite challenging.

    A generous population of barrel cacti reside along this trail and they shine bright red in the sun - great picture opportunities. I've seen desert tortoises - two different times - on this trail.

    Best to do this trail very early in the morning when both the heat and the tourists won't be so overwhelming.

    The oasis at the end is a cool wonder. Sadly, some idiots have carved their names in the bark of the palm trees. It was much worse several years ago, and some of that graffiti is no longer visible, but what is left is very annoying. Always report vandalism.

    Dana Egreczky completed Fortynine Palms Oasis Trail

    almost 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky reviewed Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago

    This is an easy trail that winds up through rolling prairie grasslands and into forested areas along a path that provides great views of Custer State Park and surrounding areas. Depending on the time of year, the trail offers spectacular wildflower displays and a small stream which dries up in mid-summer. It is well-marked. Park officials asked us to report the presence of any bison along the trail (none), but we did spot plenty of birds and an immature rattlesnake, which went on its own way without bothering us. Additional details about this trail can be found on the park brochure.

    Dana Egreczky completed Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago

    Dana Egreczky updated Prairie Trail

    over 2 years ago