Big Pine Trail

MODERATE 5 reviews
#55 of 97 trails in

Big Pine Trail is a 8.5 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Joshua Tree, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October.

8.5 miles
836 feet
Out & Back



nature trips

trail running



wild flowers


no shade

no dogs

This is another good hike in Josha Tree National Park.  The Big Pine Tree has long ago died, but is trunk remains standing tall so you know you made it to your destination.  The destination is not important, but the journey is.  We also walked out to the Boy Scout Trail.  Just a half mile before the Boy Scout Trail is a hill that is covered in Quartz.  Very cool.

8 months ago

Enjoyed this trail in the end of November.
The first mile and the last mile back (because it is a out and back trial) was a little harder because this is all sand.

But the rest was definitely okay!

8 months ago

Really enjoyed this trail for its diversity and options to combine with other trails. Did the Maze trail out to connect with Big Pine, a very pretty but easy walk. Indeed it’s the journey not the destination. Did the North View Trail back which was more challenging due to elevation changes but definitely well worth it for the views and incredible rock formations. Only saw two other people on the entire trail. Was very glad to have this app to verify the trail route as a few points are a bit deceptive particularly on the North View trail. Enjoy!!

Saturday, June 17, 2017

I put most of Big Pine together with North View and Maze for a good walk. I was glad to get out of the sandy areas, loved climbing around in the rocks (didn't know that the trail ended where it did so just kept crawling down...). Nothing too difficult.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Hiked quite a number of trails in Joshua Tree last week and this was our favorite. The East end of the trail intersects the Boy Scout Trail at near the half-way point on the Boy Scout Trail. Probably because of this, the trail appears to be very lightly used. Several short loop trails are available off the Big Pine Trail at around the mid-way point.

The trail starts off (on the East end) following a wash with very steep rock walls on either side for about a half mile, then it opens up. At this point, there is a fantastic spot for secluded and hidden back-country camping if you scramble the low ridge to your right into a small valley.

From here the trail becomes very beautiful, moving between several different mini valleys, each with their own scenery to offer. About 2 miles up the trail, there is a Y and a sign that points to "Big Pine Spur" to the right. About another half mile gets you to the dead pine tree. You can continue down the wash and scramble some boulders for a view of the town of Joshua Tree. This spur trail is somewhat hard to follow but you can very quickly see the gap where the pine tree is located so just go in that general direction.

We saw probably 15 people on the Boyscout Trail but not a single person on the Big Pine trail. We didn't explore the section that goes East from the spur junction so can't comment on that.

6 months ago