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Joshua Tree NP, CA
mini location map2016-02-07
26 by photographer avatarDallinW
photographer avatar
page 1   2
 
Joshua Tree NP, CA 
Joshua Tree NP, CA
 
Hiking avatar Feb 07 2016
DallinW
Hiking12.10 Miles 2,548 AEG
Hiking12.10 Miles
2,548 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
The day started off on the right foot as I jumped onto the 60 and realized I left my hiking clothes in the dryer back at my apartment... Thankfully, I had only made it a few blocks before realizing and turning back.

After arriving via the South Entrance, I headed for the Lost Palms Oasis TH. It was very windy immediately after I got out of my truck. I changed into my hiking clothes and hit the trail, excited for the day ahead.

The trail gradually increases in elevation until about a mile before you hit Lost Palms Canyon, where it will drop into and climb out of a small but steep wash. The landscape is littered with large boulders, small joshua trees, some cedars, and a few cholla. The destination of the hike is a narrow canyon which hosts a few dozen fan palm trees. I thought there was also a perennial water source in the canyon, but I was unable to find it.

After returning to the TH, I went hit up the Cholla Cactus Garden. I circled the loop twice looking for some good photo opportunities. Although short, I think it's well worth the time. The concentration of Cholla in this small area might surprise you. Up until about half a mile from the garden, I kept asking myself "so where's the cholla?"

Ryan Mountain was my next destination. The trail is short at just 1.5 miles, but it climbs ~1000 ft so some effort is required. The views going up aren't anything to rave about, but at the top you're treated with 360 degree views of the park, along with fair views of San Jacinto and (I think) San Gorgonio, both of which are currently snow capped.

Next I headed to Keys View. The wind was moving pretty fast at the viewpoint and it pushed me around a little. The sun was directly in my face at this point so the views weren't great, but still good. In hind sight I would probably do Keys View at sunrise for good views of the sun hitting San Jacinto. I decided to drive to my next hike and then return to Keys View for the sunset.

I headed back down the hill and did the Hidden Valley Nature Loop. The loop is about a mile long but it doesn't disappoint. There are a lot of cool boulder piles and good views inside the small valley. I saw a few climbers enjoying the setting sun atop the rocks.

After finishing the loop, I booked it back to Keys Views hoping I hadn't missed the best of the sunset. I probably did, but it was still good nonetheless. There was still strong winds pushing me around, so I dropped below the viewpoint and found myself a nice cedar to take shelter behind to watch the sun set behind San Jacinto, and the lights turn on in Palm Springs.
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DallinW's
131 Photosets

  2016-04-27
  2016-04-09
  2016-03-24
  2016-03-12
  2016-03-04
  2016-02-27
  2016-02-20
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  2016-01-23
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  2015-12-27
  2015-12-23
  2015-11-27
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