Although this trail is rated very difficult, only 1.3 miles in the narrow section of Box Canyon merit this rating. The remainder of the trail is pretty easy. However, given that this section is in the middle of the trail and there is no alternate way around it, the trail has been rated very difficult. The trail leaves US 60 and enters a military firing range. A notice board at the junction gives dates of live firing practice. In addition, a red flag is flown from the flagpole at the start of the trail when live firing is in progress.
Most of this trail is on state land, and a valid permit is required. Special Attractions: Wooden and adobe cabins at the Martinez Mine; Tight, red-walled Martinez Canyon; Wide-ranging desert views and prolific desert vegetation. High-clearance 4WDs are required. This trail has either a rough, rutted surface, rocks up to 9 inches, mud and deep sand that may be impassable for inexperienced drivers, or stream crossings up to 18 inches deep. Certain sections may be steep enough to cause traction problems, and you may encounter very narrow shelf roads with steep drop-offs and tight clearance between rocks or trees.
© 2006 Peter Massey & Jeanne Wilson/Adler Publishing . All Rights Reserved.