Barker Dam Nature Trail

EASY 269 reviews
#2 of 97 trails in

Barker Dam Nature Trail is a 1.2 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Twentynine Palms, California that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October.

DISTANCE
1.2 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
59 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

rock climbing

trail running

walking

forest

lake

views

wild flowers

wildlife

no dogs

Directions from Oasis Visitor Center: Follow Twentynine Palms Highway (62) westward to Joshua Tree. In Joshua Tree turn left on Park Boulevard, which becomes Quail Springs Road after crossing Alta Loma Drive. Follow Quail Springs Road to the improved road that leads to Hidden Valley Campground. Continue driving past the campground entrance about one mile to the Barker Dam Trail parking area

hiking
2 days ago

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.

hiking
10 days ago

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

hiking
22 days ago

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).

24 days ago

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

25 days ago

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

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

hiking
27 days ago

Great easy hike/walk to end the day in Joshua Tree National Park. The sun was going down when we got here and the rocks and pond looked really beautiful. Definitely doable for families, and is one of the more popular trails that we encountered so there will be plenty of people there but it didn’t feel overcrowded.

29 days ago

Perfect hike with little kids! My 3 year old desert baby loved seeing the water and birds!

1 month ago

This trail is pretty short, but don’t let that fool you! You can spend a lot of time exploring this area. I thought it was very peaceful, I did this hike around 7am in February. So not a lot of people were out, but by the time I finished the parking lot was full. I took my time exploring the rock features along the way. Plus, it’s probably the only place you’re going to see a body of water in the park. Lol.

hiking
1 month ago

A fun little hike in Joshua Tree. Pretty short and easy. Like a lot of places in Joshua Tree, the rock formations are pretty fun to explore and climb. The dam itself and the history are pretty interesting.

Definitely more “touristy” due to the short length and ease of the hike, but still fun to see.

1 month ago

Fun scramble beyond the lake

1 month ago

A very nice hiking loop. We enjoyed it very much.

hiking
1 month ago

We enjoyed this easy loop trail with lots to see and fun photography options. Lots of places to scamper on the rocks and a good trail for those more interested in meandering.

hiking
1 month ago

The hike to the dam is easy and the dam itself is worth the visit.

hiking
1 month ago

I have never been hiking in Joshua Tree National Park, so this is a question for those who have traveled and hiked here. Do you have tour guides or just offer maps to hike each trail listed on your own? Thank you!

hiking
1 month ago

This was a nice easy scenic trail. Have an opportunity to sit and hang out on the rocks over the damned pond.

hiking
1 month ago

Very nice hike especially in spring when there is still water in the little lake that is barred by the dam. Unfortunately it has the same problem as Hidden Valley...too many people.

hiking
1 month ago

I loved this hike. It was well marked, easy terrain, and the damn was interesting to see. There is one small section that might be a bit challenging for those with mobility issues, otherwise a great hike for all skill levels.

hiking
2 months ago

I really enjoyed this hike, it was short and easy to follow. Once we reached the dam we climbed some rocks and relaxed and took in the beautiful view. I would definitely like to do this hike again.

hiking
2 months ago

Nice stroll through some nice rock formations.

3 months ago

Will do this again for sure. Beautiful hike, water and rocks.

3 months ago

Nice little trail! It’s a neat peace of history

walking
3 months ago

Super easy trail, with absolutely beautiful scenery! Easy for all ages and fitness levels.

nature trips
3 months ago

Easy and fun hike. There's some hieroglyphics along the trail, the historical Barker Dam, and a lot of signage about the flora and fauna of the area. A great family walk.

4 months ago

Easy, but fun little hike. My wife and I jumped off the trail to climb up for some better vantage points. We arrived early as were basically alone for a bit. By the time we left the trail was heavily trafficked. Nice hike, not hard unless you want to climb up.

hiking
4 months ago

This was a beautiful little walk!
We saw the sunset here (see my pictures). And the reflection in the water is so wonderful.

4 months ago

The little lake is beautiful in the fall. Oak trees are orange and yellow and are reflected in the glass like water. An easy but fun hike.

5 months ago

does not let you check in

6 months ago

Short hike but beautiful view of the dam and a nice place to relax if you've been trekking much of the park.

6 months ago

Large family friendly. We have 5 small children under 10 and really enjoy this hike. There are parts where we carry the 2 year old, but other than that the littles can do most of it and enjoy climbing.

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