Set aside a half day the next time you're in Joshua Tree National Park and hike the Wall Street Mill trail. The round-trip distance is less than two miles, but there is a lot of history and desert gold along the way. It's an easy hike, but could end up taking you the entire day if you like to roam and explore as much as I do. I generally make sure I have plenty of water and some trail munchies, and then I don't worry about the time. I just go and wander and generally find something I haven't seen before.Read More
Joshua Tree National Park
A drive through Joshua Tree National Park might take a couple hours, viewing the park from the road. An exploration of the park would take a lifetime. Joshua Tree National Park has over 550,000 acres of wilderness filled with a variety of plants and animals that make their home in this land shaped by strong winds, unpredictable torrents of rain, and climatic extremes. Every now and then, man intrudes in this wilderness and leaves his brief, passing mark among the surreal geologic features that cover the landscape. Let’s go see what we can find.
If you like to hike in remote, lightly used yet historic spots in Joshua Tree National Park, Pinyon Well canyon is the destination. Water, mining, milling and freighting have all created history in this canyon, as well as the Native Americans who once spent time in the area. Some of that history is plain to see. But some will take a bit of searching (and luck) to find, and that's part of the fun.Read More
Johnny Lang first saw Lost Horse Valley in 1890, when he and his father dove a herd of cattle into the area and set up camp. One morning, they awoke to find their horses gone. Johnny tracked them to the McHaney brothers’ (local cattle rustlers) camp. The McHaneys informed Johnny the horses weren’t there and he’d better leave the area. Some time later, Johnny met up with a man named “Dutch” Frank. Now Dutch had a rich mining claim, but was afraid to work it because of the McHaney boys. So he sold the claim to Johnny and his father for $1,000 and they named it the Lost Horse mine.Read More
I was heading out into the backcountry of Joshua Tree, to a place I'd never been before. I drove down the Geology Tour Road to the Pleasant Valley Backcountry Board, parked my truck, got my gear together and headed east into Fried Liver Wash. After about 100 yards, I went back to the truck and got some more water. I'd be glad later that I did.Read More