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Barker Dam Nature Trail is a 1.3 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.

Length 1.3 mi Elevation gain 62 ft Route type Loop

Kid friendly

Hiking

Nature trips

Walking

Bird watching

Running

Forest

Lake

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

No dogs

Waypoints (2)
Contact
Getting There
  • 1

    Parking Lot

    34.02518, -116.14174

  • 2

    The Dam

    34.03062, -116.14482

California Travel and Tourism Commision, P.O. Box 1499 , Sacramento, CA, 95812-1499, Phone: 800-862-2543

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

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (902)
Photos (861)
Recordings (683)
Completed (2131)
Hong Tran
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarTue Jul 14 2020
HikingBugsNo shade

Pretty hike with lots of little animals all over. Most of the water was dried out when I went last Friday but there was a little left. Watch out for bees.

Shelley Fry
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarWed Jul 08 2020
Hiking

The trail was well marked. The rock formations were cool and the dam was nice. I loved the petroglyphs you could see on a big rock. 10/10 would recommend!

View Shelley's Recording
Kaylee Vandjelovic
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarMon Jul 06 2020
HikingNo shade

Nice and easy hike with some rock formations and Joshua trees. The dam was neat to see in the desert.

Raysa Machado
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSat Jul 04 2020
HikingNo shade

Super easy, no shade and also there wasn't actually water at the end due to the season heat.

Monali Patel
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarWed Jul 01 2020
Hiking

Hiked this with Meeri on May, 2018. Nice and easy and super cool rocks and scenery.

Cieara Donati
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSat Jun 27 2020
Hiking

I really loved this hike. Very easy and the dam was super interesting to see! I saw lots of birds and jack rabbits during my time here.

Dan McMullen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMon Jun 22 2020
Hiking

Easy, informative trail about the desert nature. If you don't like small bugs flying around your face I found that wearing a face net helped mitigate the problem.

Pilar Arias
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSun Jun 14 2020

Nice, easy loop to do even when hot in the park. It does get crowded. The dam itself is smaller than I imagined and the water level was definitely low, probably due to no recent rains. Liked the petroglyphs at the end. Please pay attention to the social distancing signs in the park asking everyone go one way on trails.

Michael Brodnansky
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jun 08 2020
HikingBugsMuddyOff trailRockyScramble

Fun easy trail. Pond near the dam is beautiful. Lots of ducks and other birds in the area. Beautiful pictures and a beautiful spot for a picnic. Muddy and buggy near the pond. Wouldn’t recommend attempting to swim here, water is gross and I’d be careful of snakes. Lots of rocks to climb around on. Nice little desert portion towards the end with exhibits to teach about desert life. Also check out the petroglyphs on a nearby trail.

Jenni B
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Jun 07 2020
Hiking

Love this trail. Done it many times. The mountains reflect in the dam water and makes for spectacular photos.

Nikki Custer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSun Jun 07 2020
HikingBugsNo shadeRocky

Great little sunrise hike with my daughter. Saw some baby ducks in the water. No shady so complete this early.

Teila Evans
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarThu Jun 04 2020
HikingBugs

Nice easy loop (even for kids) especially when it’s getting hot in the summer. Can def get crowded.

Mathew Fiegleman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarWed Jun 03 2020
Hiking

I'm a man in his late 20s, physically in shape, not super athletic. Enjoy tough hikes. This "hike" was very easy and enjoyable. The dam is neat to see in the middle of the desert.

Kylin Zhuo
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarTue Jun 02 2020
Hiking

Easy hiking trail with stunning view of rocks.

Luna U
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jun 01 2020

this hike was magical amazing rocks and the pond gives it an extra touch. I should came earlier to enjoyed more of this magical spot.

Michael Rey
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jun 01 2020
Hiking

Fun warm up and first time hike if you’ve never visited JT. If you ever get to see the dam with water it’s pretty amazing. The early morning reflections off the water is worth the short hike.

Daneille Buenrostro
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun May 31 2020
Hiking

Easy Hike to the Dam. Water is dirty dont think you getting in. Nature is great around here and cactus during this time of year is mind blowing how beautiful it is. Hike is marked the whole way not easy to get lost. Good for all ages just make sure to have plenty of Water on you to stay hydrated.

Zoe Navapanich
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarTue May 26 2020
Hiking

this trail was a little too crowded for my taste, but a worthwhile hike nonetheless. it's pretty much totally flat and brings you past some really cool attractions including petroglyphs and a dam that looks particularly great when the water is flat enough to reflect the rocks.

Brett Copeland
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat May 23 2020
Hiking

Hands down best trial in Joshua Tree if you go when the lake is full of water. There are also petroglyphs- but it’s really all about that lake and those boulders. Nice loop

Sarah Kjenstad
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarFri May 22 2020
HikingBugs
View Sarah's Recording
Jessica G.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu May 21 2020
Hiking

Loved this trail. My six year old easily followed along. It had a few rocky climbs but nothing too difficult. In May the dam looks gorgeous. It was low enough and hot enough to create some green algae on the shoreline. There are some shady areas to rest along the way. Cool flat boulders to climb for added interest for my son. At a slow (ungodly slow) pace we finished the loop in 90 min.

James R Wilson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFri Apr 17 2020
Hiking

Apr 16th, 2020 - All of Joshua Tree National Park is closed to all visitors "until further notice", due to the pandemic.

Alex Workman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu Apr 02 2020
Hiking

Fun, easy trail. Absolutely incredible spot in the park, very unique rock formations and plant life, as well as cool pictographs. The dam and the history of the dam was very interesting too.

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