Sierra Club WTC Scramble Route

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Joshua Tree National Park

Sierra Club WTC Scramble Route is a 4 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Twentynine Palms, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail is primarily used for hiking and rock climbing and is best used from September until May.

Distance: 4.0 miles Elevation Gain: 997 feet Route Type: Loop

hiking

rock climbing

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

scramble

no dogs

NOTE: This is NOT a casual hiking trail. This is a technical trail with extremely difficult rock climbing used by the Sierra Club as a training course. This trail is not maintained by Joshua Tree National Park. The Wilderness Travel Course put on by the Sierra Club each year conducts a Joshua Tree weekend training. They focus on navigation and rock scrambling techniques on this weekend of the 10 week course. This peak is a challenging destination of the annual weekend. You will begin the hike up a gorge, then up to a flat, followed by a steep hill, another Plateau, and a tough climb to the summit. The climb has a 1380 foot elevation gain to the peak and 4 mikes total. Joshua Tree is a National Park and entrance fees are required to enter the park.

hiking
no shade
off trail
rocky
scramble
1 day ago

Great trail. Very demanding. Steep scrambling up and down boulders. Unbelievable views.

2 months ago

Please don't hike alone here! I broke my foot and had to be rescued. I am really fortunate to be alive!

hiking
scramble
3 months ago

Recommend starting clockwise so the sun will be on your back on the way out.

hiking
no shade
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

With all the zigzagging you’ll need to do, this trail is 5 miles NOT 3. It’s 80-90% scrambling over boulders for those 5 miles. Not for the faint of heart, but the views are gorgeous, as are the cacti, palms, etc. I hiked this alone, but that was before I realized it was 5 miles. I’d recommend a hiking companion - it’s easy to twist an ankle on all those rocks and no one would hear your calls for help. I didn’t see a single soul the entire hike.

hiking
rocky
scramble
4 months ago

My girlfriend and I tried this climb from the Indian Cove Campground but she wasn't able to make it too far before having to stop and I'm not sure I would have been able to get too much further either. We're both very experienced hikers but this is not hiking. This is scrambling and rock climbing. If you have no experience with scrambling or rock climbing this will definitely be a challenge. I'll definitely be back to try again! (with a different partner )

hiking
icy
rocky
scramble
4 months ago

This trail is definitely a difficult one that requires lots of climbing over huge boulders (which I learned they call “scrambling”). I’m 5’3” and there were some rocks where my bf had to pull me up over. He’s 6’3” and even he had boulders that were a lot taller than him. The trail is not a clearly marked trail (It seems like most trails in this area are not). We came in the winter right before NYE and we’re told it is a lot easier in the spring. I imagine you can walk up near the wash when it’s dry out. There was a small creek in the wash which didn’t allow for us to walk along it so we climbed over boulder after boulder. Lots of boulders were icy which made it a bit dangerous at times. Fun if your body can make those climbs but we definitely only went part of the way up and came back down. Would love to come back in spring to see what the full loop looks like.

hiking
5 months ago

Definitely a “hard” trail with a long vertical ascent requiring bouldering over large obstacles. The peak has great views. The way down also requires constant re-routing to find the best route. Easy to get off the unmarked trail, bring a map. 4 hours in total for us moving at a slow to moderate pace. Second time on this trail and haven’t seen anyone else on the trail.

hiking
bugs
off trail
rocky
scramble
11 months ago

Holy shit. So good! Definitely should be rated hard. I think we got a little off trail- it’s hard to stay in track. Lots of boulder scrambling and hopping around. Mosquitos are bad- so wear spray. Wear long pants- lots of plants with thorns. Bring plenty of water and a snack. When we ended the trail it said we did almost 5 miles.

hiking
Mon Mar 11 2019

Didn’t beat us this year!!! Great hike - lots of bouldering on the front half. Impressive view of the valley.

Mon Dec 31 2018

Moderate climb up and down, made it in 3 hours moving fast! Lots of scrambling and climbing boulders, not for those who dislike a hard climb. Didn’t see anyone else on the trail, be sure to use a Map with a pin location to ensure you aren’t going too far.

hiking
Wed Mar 21 2018

This is a challenging, unmarked "trail" that is perhaps a little more than "moderate", read: not great for younger or inexperienced hikers. The majority of the route involves scrambling over large boulders including some substantial obstacles in the eastern gorge. Travel time for two adults and one ambitious 11 year old was 4 hours excluding the final climb to the peak. I've done this hike twice and the view from the peak is impressive and a little nerve-wrecking due to a substantial dropoff on the north face.

Wed Mar 21 2018

The landscape is incredible. The trail is a “raiders for the lost ark” expedition- if you don’t have gps and AllTrails you will have no idea where you are. This trail seemed much more than ‘moderate ‘ going up the boulder gorge at the beginning. I just wish it wouldn’t have bested me and I could have completed it. We abandoned the boulder gorge and went around the backside of the loop but ran out of daylight

Fri Dec 22 2017

Mainly bouldering

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

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