Joshua Tree National Park is an explorer’s paradise. The area requires navigation skills, using large rock formations and the sun, if not a map and compass. Early settlers to the area aptly named sections of the park, including Hidden Valley, Wonderland of Rocks, and Sheep’s Pass to indicate some of the natural treasures in Joshua Tree National Park.
Terrain includes piles of jumbled rocks, washes, desert mountains, and an expansive desert biome. Jackrabbit, coyote, Desert Kangaroo Rat, Raven, and Scrub Jay are commonly seen. Desert Bighorn Sheep can be spotted away from roads in backcountry settings of the Park. The iconic Joshua Tree is a Yucca, named for a biblical figure by Mormon settlers. It has been found that Joshua Trees are in peril, due to climate change. The State of California Fish and Game Commission recently declared Joshua Trees an endangered species. As a result, there is hope that the trees will survive through the end of this century. Meanwhile, we will all do our part to take good care of our valuable environment, and visit often to appreciate all it has to offer.
View the Coachella Valley, and as far south as the Salton Sea, on a clear day from Key’s View. Mt. San Jacinto (elevation, 10,800 feet), and a snowy Mt. San Gorgonio (elevation, 11,500 feet) can be seen from this vantage point, as well. It has been said that, even, Mexico’s Signal Mountain can be seen, at times. Key’s View is a twenty minute drive from the main park road, and a quarter mile, paved trail to a panoramic lookout point atop the Little San Bernardino Mountains.