Joshua Tree National Park

Warren Peak. Elevation? 5,103 feet. It is the most western peak to exceed 5,000 feet in Joshua Tree National Park. Our hike was about 6 miles and we had over 1,000 feet of gain, most of it as we ascended the mountain.

This was our first visit to Joshua Tree National Park. There are several entrances into this park and, given that it spans over 790,000 acres, it does require a bit of planning before you go.

We had decided that we wanted to hike to Warren Peak and we entered through the western side of the park.

Joshua trees dominated the landscape for most of the hike. The name of the Joshua tree is said to have been given by the Mormons as they were crossing the Mojave desert. In the bible, there is a story about Joshua keeping his hands reached out for long periods of time to guide the Israelites. The Joshua tree has a very unique shape.

Most of the Joshua trees were flowering. You can see the light coloured panicles at the end of the branches.

Here, Lorraine stands in the middle of a forest of Joshua trees. This was about as dense a forest as we found on our hike.

There were cacti and, fortunately, we did not stick to any as we walked about the area. They were always nearby. I remained cautious as I wandered about taking pictures.

After a few hours on the trail, we came to a fork in the road. One arrow pointed to Warren’s Vista and the other to the peak.

Lorraine asked me if we were going to be ascending to the very peak of the mountain. My response was no way. It would not be safe.

We decided on the path to the peak. How far would the trail go? How far would we go? To the very top of course.

We began our ascent. And, as we increased our elevation, we began to see the vast expanse of mountains at eye level.

The ascent at this point in the hike does get challenging. The path becomes steeper and narrower and we took a number of breaks before reaching the very top of this mountain.

My favourite shot of the day shows Lorraine posting our successful ascent on Facebook. Yes, even here, we could connect to social media. When I joined Lorraine at the peak, my daughter called to wish me a happy birthday. We sent her some photos directly from the peak.

What does the view look like from up here? Absolutely stunning. Here are a few shots from the peak.

We enjoyed our lunch on top of the world and, reluctantly, made our way back to the trailhead.

Another perfect day.

6 replies
  1. Catherine Roberts
    Catherine Roberts says:

    Have been enjoying your journey! By far, the most spectacular for me are these most recent explorations. FYI I am returning to the coolness of Kingston next week. Been in south Florida for 3 months. It is time for me to go home and face new realities. Valentine won’t be happy with the cold but she will need to “suck it up”.
    Hope to see you sometime in the not too distant future. Keep on having fun,

    • Richard
      Richard says:

      Hello Catherine,

      Thanks for following along! We’ve watched the weather in Kingston and it is definitely a touch cooler than Southern California and southern Florida 😉


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