by Coachella Valley | September 21, 2016 11:30 am
Joshua Tree National Park is one of the most well-known rock climbing destinations in California; but is also a location with great hiking. One of the most remote and scenic hikes in the park is the Lost Palms Oasis.
This hike offers stunning views; and a variety of terrain for all types of hikers. The hike gradually ascends from the Cottonwood trailhead for one mile before leveling out along a slight plateau.
It is worth noting that at that one mile mark, the trail has a junction for Mastodon Peak, which is a small mountain located a half mile to the North. Experienced hikers will want to take this detour either on the way in or way out of their trip to the oasis to have a great view of the surrounding area.
From the one mile mark onward, the trail to Lost Palms has a number of features for all levels of hikers, including nearby boulders to explore; and sandy washes and slot canyons to traverse. The payoff of this hike is the Lost Palms Oasis – the only stand of fan palms in the park, as well as stellar views of the desert, including the Salton Sea to the South.
This hike is a moderate seven miles roundtrip; although in the summer months, it is a route that should be attempted by experienced hikers only.
To get to the trailhead: From the 10 Freeway, take exit 168 and head north on Cottonwood Spring Road. After 7 miles, turn right before the at Cottonwood Visitor Center and continue 1 mile to the trailhead at road’s end. From within the park, Take Park Blvd to the junction with Pinto Basin Road. Take Pinto Basin Road thirty miles to the Cottonwood Visitor Center, turn east and continue one mile to the trailhead at road’s end.
Trailhead address: Unnamed road off Pinto Basin Road, Joshua Tree National Park, CA 92277
Trailhead coordinates: 33.736992, -115.810888 (33° 44′ 13.17″N 115° 48′ 39.19″W)
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