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Joshua Tree NP – Hiking Old Lost Horse Road
This easy 3-miles
hike will take you into one of the most beautiful forests of Joshua Trees in
Trees Forest in this valley is spreading on both sides of the park main road
from Hidden Valley south to Cap Rock junction.
Located at the
heart of Joshua Tree Park just off the main Park Blvd road.
From the west
park entrance drive 9 miles and you will see the turn into Hidden Valley parking
lot at your right.
Make sure not
to confuse the parking lot with Hidden Valley Campground that is on the other
side of the main road.
winter and spring is the preferred time to visit the Mojave Desert, summer is
Due note 1: Water - Always
take more than what you think you need, this is desert and temperature can be
hot, in summer this is extremely hot environment. There is no water available
in the park.
Due note 2: Pets are not
permitted on any trails in the park, except for the paved Oasis of Mara Trail.
Due note 3: There is
limited cell service in Joshua Tree National Park, so make sure to have a park
map on hand.
Due note 4: No gas service
in the park, there are many options near the north and west entrance to the
park, make sure you have enough gas when driving into the park especially if
you are driving down to Highway I-10.
Due note 5: Most of Joshua
Tree trails have little to no cover from the sun, make sure you are coming
prepared especially at the hot summer.
Due note 6: Please read
the Safety Tips section in my main park visit and planning blog.
Due note 7: Joshua Tree
National Park has 24 access; you can travel in the park at night or before
Due note 8: At winter
evenings and nights it can be windy and cold, come with the right clothing.
located in the heart of the park near the most crowded trails (Hidden Valley) this
trail is not overcrowded, and it is highly recommended.
This is flat
easy hike and because this is out and back you can also hike shorter or longer
This valley in
the park probably have the most impressive Joshua Tree Forest I saw in all my Mojave
Desert trips (and I did a lot of them…).
are not actual trees, but members of the yucca family. Joshua trees only grow
in the Mojave Desert. The Mormons who named the trees thought their
outstretched branches resembled Joshua raising his arms. These trees are
confined to altitude rage of about 2,500-6,000 feet above sea level, so they
can’t grow in lower valleys or high mountain slopes, and they do need sandy
soil to flourish.
easy and flat out and back trail begins at the Hidden Valley Picnic Area.
You need to
walk to the far side of the loop where there are picnic tables, here at the end
of the short road you will see the trail starting point.
This is one of
the park’s best trails to view up-close the large Joshua Tree Forest in the
middle of the park.
The trail is clear,
and you can’t get lost, heading in straight line southwest into the valley.
You can enjoy
the flat trail and the open view of the Joshua Tree Forest to one side and the bolder
hills to the other side of the trail.
After 0.4 mile
you will reach the junction with Old Lost Horse Road at the dry creek, here you
need to turn left.
follow the dry creek in a straight line for another mile until it reaches the
Here I turned
around and walk back the same way I came.
You can also cross
the road and use a connecting trail to reach Echo Tee Trail, turning left and
walk all the way to the campground and from there back to Hidden Valley trail
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