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Contact: Jennifer Albrinck, 760-367-5520
Beginning Monday June 14, 2021 Joshua Tree National Park managers will close the 49 Palms Trail to allow bighorn sheep undisturbed access to surface water. The park is under extreme drought conditions and herds in the area are increasingly reliant on the oasis spring to survive the hot summer months. The closure will remain in place until summer monsoons provide adequate rainfall to increase water availability. Park wildlife biologists will be monitoring the situation closely.
Hikers should be prepared to use other trails in the park but must use extreme caution. All hikes should be planned to begin at or before sunrise and end by 10:00 AM, or not to begin until after 4:00 PM. Hiking in the middle of the day is not recommended. Summer temperatures on exposed parts of park trails can reach over 120° F (49° C) in the shade. Hiking in extreme heat can lead to serious health risks including heat exhaustion, heat stroke, hyponatremia, and death.
More information on hiking smart in the heat at Joshua Tree National Park can be found at the following website: www.nps.gov/jotr/planyourvisit/hiking.htm.
Last updated: June 11, 2021