Monday, November 17, 2014

Ryan Mountain, Joshua Tree National Park Palm Springs Vacation Day 2

I heard of Joshua Tree National Park but never paid enough attention or interest to consider visiting one day. When planning this vacation and seeing how close it was to Palm Springs, of course then, it peaked my curiosity.  I did some investigating and after what I read and saw, I just had to drop by.  I went for an early start from the City seeing as this could be a longer day.  I stopped in at the Visitor Center in the town of Joshua Tree at the West Entrance to obtain a map and to purchase my patch. The entrance station was a few kilometers along and once through the gate, then it all began.

Soloing along in my red Chevy, the sights commanded vocal ooohhs & aaahhs and about ten stops within the first kilometer.  My inner voice told me if you keep this up you will never get anywhere.  I tried my best to listen and just drive on to my first destination, that being the trail head for Ryan Mountain.  This Mountain has the second highest spot in Joshua Tree National Park.  Being a shorter hike, I could accomplish this summit and still see everything else the Park offers up.

The only flat on this trail was for the first few minutes and then again just before the summit.  There was one other vehicle in the lot and that couple started out a little while before me.  Once again, it pays to be up with the birds.  As the climb started off early, the views began early.  It opened up and opened up and WOW opened up again.  As I arrived at the summit, the couple packed up and said "enjoy" and off they went.  I had a 360 panorama.  Just like yesterday, I had no idea what I was seeing but I sure liked it.  I had an early lunch, then began my descent.

With many pull-offs and exhibits, it was slow going.  The traffic was nil, so I was able to thoroughly enjoy all the sights, especially Skull Rock.  It reminded me of the Moab area with all the slick rock boulder play areas. Joshua Tree National Park has loads of areas for rock climbing and bouldering.  I took time to play and then went on my way.

I visited a few other locations then carried on towards the Cottonwood Entrance then out of the Park onto the I-10 to home.  This place is a land like no other so afforded me many unique sights.  Just like all the other National Parks on this side of the border that I have been fortunate enough to visit, Joshua Tree National Park is truly a beauty.
entering Joshua Tree National Park

trail head for Ryan Mountain

on the road again

at Keys View eyeing San Jacinto Peak below the branch

at Skull Rock

at Cholla Cactus Garden


1 comment:

  1. Spectacular country. How do you set up your camera to get your summit shots. It must have been a big dash in the last shot!

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