"Joshua Tree National Park" Top 5 Page for this destination Other National / State Parks Tip by Basaic
Other National / State Parks, California: 59 reviews and 122 photos
The Joshua Tree National Park houses a surprisingly diverse plant and animal life. The main attraction, of course is the Joshua Tree itself (Yucca Brevifolia). Additionally, there is the landscape which was shaped by strong winds, unpredictable torrents of rain, and climatic extremes. Dark night skies, a rich cultural history, and surreal geologic features add to the attraction of this place. You would need to spend a few days here to fully explore the park. If your time is limited you may want to consider limiting yourself to the main park roads. There are a number of pullouts with wayside exhibits all along these roads. There are 12 self-guiding nature trails, and you may want to experience at least one of these walks. Keys View, which was closed during my visit, offers views beyond Salton Sea to Mexico. There are 9 campgrounds and a number of picnic areas in the park. Joshua Tree National Park is also a very popular rock-climbing destination. The park is always open and may be visited anytime of year. Visitation increases as temperatures moderate in the fall, peaks during spring wildflower season, and diminishes during the heat of summer. A 7-Day Vehicle Permit costs $15 and admits the passengers of a single, non-commercial vehicle for the day of purchase and the next six days. An additional attraction in the park is the Keys Ranch, a prime example of the way the rugged individuals who populated this desolate area eked out their living. Ranger guided tours of the ranch, the only way to see it, are scheduled for 11 AM and 1 PM Saturday and Sunday from October through May. Weekday tours vary during the season and are listed on the Ranger Program schedule. The tour costs $5 per person, is 1/2-mile in length and lasts 90 minutes. Group size is limited to 25 people.
There are also lots of interesting mountains/rock formations throughout the park. They have posted informational signs at various sites and pulloffs in the park that explain how these formations were made and provide additional information.
For more information see my Joshua Tree National Park Page.
Address: 74485 National Park Drive Twentynine Palms, CA
Directions: Just north of Interstate 10 between LA and Arizona.
Phone: (760) 367-5500
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