Summary: This is a fine and fairly easy introductory hike to Joshua Tree National Park. You get some good mountain views, follow an historic wagon road that leads to the most prosperous of Joshua Tree gold mines. The remains of which are kept behind a chain link fence for their protection.
A shame that so many people would deface and destroy something from our heritage, but they would. If you need an example, visit any mine in the Angeles National Forest.
If you head in at a good pace, you'll be there before you know it. My total hike time for this trip was one hour and ten minutes, and I wasn't even trying to be fast, but if you set out at your leisure, or have elders or children with you, this may just be the hike of a lifetime. There is something here for everyone to enjoy, and that doesn't even mention the arbor of Joshuas on the road to the trailhead.
Trailhead: Take the 10 towards Palm Springs and exit on the 62 heading North. Follow the 62 through the desert hamlets of Morongo, Yucca Valley, and Joshua Tree. From there you will see signs that tell you how far you are from the West entrance to the park. Turn right on Park and follow it to the entrance booth where you'll pay a $10 fee that is good for one week in the park.
Drive about ten miles to Key's View Road, turn right (just before Cap Rock) and follow it until you see a sign for Lost Horse Mine. Drive about a mile down the dirt road to the parking area.
The trail is actually an old wagon road, some washes cross it in places, but it is easy to stay on the trail. (Lat:33.94128 Lon:-116.13556)
Trail Guides for Joshua Tree NP - Lost Horse Mine and Mountain:
Day Hikers Guide to Southern California
by John McKinney (Olympus Press)
by Tom Sinestra and Ann Marie Brown (Avalon Travel)
Best Seasons: Fall, Spring, Winter,
User Groups: Hikers,
Ranger Contact: Joshua Tree National Park (760)367-5500
Localhikes Reporter: This hike was submitted by Allen Riedel, who has posted 123 other hikes on this site. To visit this reporters web site, click here.
Trail Reviews Page 2 of 3 Submit your own review
Reviewed by Bahamut on 2/7/2009
This is a nice trail with some cool history. The Stamp Mill is in great shape too.
Reviewed by David R. on 1/5/2009
Hiked this trail on 12/28 in some snow with my 11 year old. We also climbed Lost Horse Mtn. which overlooks the mine. The way back we follwed the long ridge that bisects into the parking area. Total time hiking was 3 hours.
Reviewed by GAC on 11/20/2008
Very Pleasant hike, no trash, awesome views. Great hike for familys or first timers. The mine is really awesome, there's only one very small piece of graffiti on the mine. Overall a great hike.
Reviewed by Heidi on 12/10/2006
We hiked this trail with 2 children (6 yr old on foot and a 2 yr old in a backpack) in September. The trail is clearly marked and quite wide in most places making this a perfect longer hike for families with young children or first-timers. Once you get to the mine do try to climb to the peak-the views are breathtaking. And it provided a perfect place to stop for lunch.
Reviewed by Matt on 11/12/2006
Hiked this starting at 7am 11/4/06, and didn't see another soul during the entire hike or in the parking lot. Hiked to the mine and back, but some sections were beyond "easy" given there grade and the condition of the trail. The hike was tiring at a good pace, but very enjoyable. I wish there hadn't been the enormous chain-link fence around the mine so you could get a closer look, but I suppose it's dangerous and the best thing for protecting the structure.
Reviewed by distancer500 on 10/1/2006
This hike can be made into an 8 mile loop by continuing on past the mine....you'll see the remaains of the prospector's house. I would rate the loop a moderate with some steep areas...It is also much less used that the out and back, and the views are amazing
Reviewed by Leah on 9/29/2006
Not as easy as they say. Maybe because it was my last hike of the day at JT. But the view at the end is quite impressive and worth the hike. I wouldn't recommend going during the hot summer months.
Reviewed by Mark & Carrie on 12/28/2005
We did this hike in the early part of December, We thought it was going to be a simple 4 mile hike, but leve it to us to make an adventure out of an easy hike.We werent really "lost' but we did manage to turn it into an almost 8 mile hike lol the mine was cool and the scenery was great, weather was also in our favor for this time of year. Best part of this hike was the company I shared it with, Love ya Carrie!!!!
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