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Lost Horse Mine Loop Trail

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Joshua Tree National Park

Lost Horse Mine Loop Trail is a 6.7 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Twentynine Palms, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, camping, and nature trips and is accessible year-round.

Distance: 6.7 miles Elevation Gain: 846 feet Route Type: Loop

camping

hiking

nature trips

running

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

no shade

no dogs

In the generally packed Joshua tree National Park, this trail is secluded and very peaceful. This hike is on the moderate side of difficult, there are short sections with some rapid ascent and decent, but overall most of the terrain is more mild. There is a nice variety of scenery throughout the hike, expansive views towards the east after the mine, lots of interesting flora and fauna throughout the hike. Clockwise, from the trailhead starting at the parking lot, is the easier direction. Go the opposite way for more challenge. Either way, do yourself a favor and do the entire loop. Most hikers go to mine and turned around, but they missed out on the best part of the hike. The access road is not paved, but any vehicle should be able to navigate it. Note: The main road to the trailhead may close during snowy weather.

no shade
rocky
1 day ago

Nice Hike with pretty views. I hiked clockwise but plan on doing counter clockwise next time to get a different feel.

Great hike. Not many people and the trail was clear.

hiking
1 month ago

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

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

Very diverse hike. Did loop clockwise like recommended by many and would do again. Saw a small heard of bighorn sheep right by the old mine site. Be careful on the weekends as the parking lot gets full and they close it....we arrived at noon and were not able to get in, so we drove to the lookout and came back around 1 and it was open again....also be prepared for a 20 minute wait/line at the park gates. Well worth it!!

hiking
2 months ago

We did the hike clockwise through the mine per everyone’s advice. The mine was very disappointing as you don’t get to see anything inside as it’s fenced off. Best part of the trail is the last 1/3 which has beautiful Joshua trees. My recommendation is to start hiking counter clockwise for 2.5-3 miles and turn back. This will help you enjoy the Joshua trees, with a gradual climb. And save your time for other better hikes in the park.

hiking
3 months ago

After 6 different hikes in the park this is definitely our favourite. The views are spectacular. Would also recommend doing clockwise. The wind was pretty strong.

hiking
no shade
3 months ago

a very enjoyable hike. we did it clockwise and stopped at the mine. we saw very few people after the mine. the parking lot was down to 2 spacea at 915 on a nice Friday, so plan to arrive earlier. there is no shade. the hiking was not difficult and there were views for the entire time. very glad we picked this hike!

hiking
3 months ago

Do the full loop, it's really beautiful. I have a full guide with video and pictures on HikingGuy com

hiking
no shade
3 months ago

Beautiful trail. First time doing it for all three of us so we started counter-clockwise and although the trail was beautiful and full of Joshua trees the first 3 miles were flat so we thought we had the wrong trail even tho the signs were there. After a quick snack by the “furnace” we continued and oh what a great surprise was waiting for us: amazing views and that’s when the climbing started. Once at the mine we explored and back to the trail to complete the loop. 6.7 miles exactly on my app. Beautiful hiking weather. It was a bit cloudy and there was a breeze. Parking lot was full but a couple was pulling out so we got lucky.

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike clockwise. Parking is limited. Recommend parking in turnouts then walking in. Doing so will add 2-4 miles to 6 mile loop.

road biking
no shade
3 months ago

hiking
no shade
rocky
3 months ago

I would rate this trail moderate to hard; clockwise is much better than counterclockwise, in my opinion. Clockwise is a lot of incline climbing but I would rather do incline instead of decline. There was very little decline heading back on the loop. This is not a trail for older people who are unsteady and I’m not sure many kids would want to do the whole thing, either. I would also suggest starting as early as possible. I started right after dawn and still sweat my butt off. The mine is a cool thing to see but the return trip down is a bit tricky-lots of shale and loose rock. Watch your step. Take plenty of water and rest often. It’s a great, challenging hike. I liked it a lot and the views are worth it!

hiking
no shade
rocky
3 months ago

Good trail - did this counter clockwise and got a great mix of Joshua trees, views, rocks and elevation. Bring lots of water! We got there around 1:30 and the parking lot was open and spaces were available.

hiking
no shade
3 months ago

hiking
no shade
rocky
4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

beautiful hike, the mine site was a lot of fun to explore. definitely do the full loop (clockwise again is easier) incredible views the entire way.

4 months ago

this was a beautiful hike. as the description says do the loop clockwise for an easier hike. there are some steep sections but the views of the valley are stunning. the last few miles are a bit of a schlep.

hiking
no shade
4 months ago

Cool trail with great views! A solid workout without being too challenging. The mine is very interesting as well, it's too bad it has been vandalized.

hiking
no shade
4 months ago

Great trail that loops around an old gold mine discovered by one of the frontier men of yore. The loop has better views at the longer half that curves around the hills and offers a Panaromic view of the valley.

hiking
muddy
4 months ago

This was a great hike BUT I lost a pair of glasses in a brown case at the top near the mine. I think they fell out when I was eating my snack by the cement foundation walls. If you see them there, please bring them to one of the welcome centers. Hoping I can get them back! Also, because the road to the trailhead is closed, parking on the main road is hard to get. There were a dozen or so cars that had parked up on the curb. When I got back from the hike I saw that several of them had tickets on them for damaging the wilderness. So if you see one or two cars do it, don’t follow their lead. We had to park a mile down the road.

hiking
closed
icy
muddy
no shade
snow
4 months ago

Did this with my wife on Jan 2. Road to trailhead and parking is closed due to snow and you have to park and hike ~3/4 mile to trailhead. We did this clockwise based on trail reviews but in retrospect would have preferred counter-clockwise. There’s a steep part of the trail on the backside of Lost Horse Mountain. If you prefer going up the steeps rather than down them, take the trail counter-clockwise. Beautiful all around. Loop with the extra hike from the road totals 7.9 miles. Enjoy!

hiking
icy
muddy
no shade
snow
4 months ago

Fantastic mid length, moderate hike! Came to Joshua Tree to enjoy the snow on New Years Day and this was the perfect trail for doing so. Will note that the main road leading to the trailhead is closed due to snow, so factor in the time to park up the road about a half mile down and walk in. We went clockwise on the trail, which leads you over fairly flat terrain for the first few miles, then after rounding the hill to beautful views you will climb up the mountain towards the mine, ending with a gentle downhill slope back to the trailhead.

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