• Sunrise at the Cholla Cactus Garden

    Joshua Tree

    National Park California

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  • Cottonwood Trails Closed

    Trail access remains closed to Cottonwood Spring Oasis, Lost Palms Oasis, and Mastodon Peak. More »

  • Pinto Basin Road Under Construction; Expect 30+ Minute Travel Delays

    Visitors should expect 30+ minute waits when heading north and sound bound on the Pinto Basin Road. Due to construction activity around Cottonwood Visitor Center, additional waits of 30 minutes may be in place when leaving the visitor center parking lot. More »

  • Deteriorating conditions of Black Rock Canyon Road

    The road leading to Black Rock campground has deep potholes, is deeply rutted, and can be difficult to negotiate, especially in large vehicles. Please drive with caution.


Students from Morongo Unified School District's Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) Kaleidoscope program worked with park rangers this summer to design a trail especially for kids. An orientation, held at Copper Mountain College, provided the students with an introduction to the National Park Service and training on various aspects of trail creation in national parks,including: resource protection and safety considerations. The students also learned how to use a Global Positioning System (GPS) unit to capture waypoints to mark a trail route and for placement of trail signs.

Next the students visited the park to hike the Skull Rock area on both the north and south sides of Park Boulevard. Dubbed the "trailblazers," they made notes of things they wanted to know more about and observations about their experiences. They took pictures of features they enjoyed exploring and captured GPS waypoints of trail routes they enjoyed hiking.

On June 29, the trailblazers presented their ideas for this "4 kids by kids trail" to park staff. Their fresh approach and novel insights were well received and will be very helpful in the creation of a trail that will appeal to a variety of age and interest groups and that will encourage kids of all ages to explore Joshua Tree National Park.


Did You Know?

Desert Queen Ranch branding iron

In the high desert country that was to become Joshua Tree National Park, rugged individuals tried their luck at cattle ranching, mining, and homesteading. William Keys and his family are particularly representative of the hard work and ingenuity it took to settle and prosper in the Mojave Desert. More...