Champion Joshua Tree Professional Review and Guide
"Joshua trees, monarchs of the Mojave Desert, reach their grandest proportions on the desert slopes of the San Bernardino Mountains. This easy hike leads to the largest-known Joshua tree in the world and is a rewarding though brief introduction to the “desert side” of these mountains. The Joshua tree is one of many unusual plants found in California’s deserts.A member of the agave family, this unique tree is unmistakable with its stiff, narrow, foot-long daggerlike leaves. Its dense flower clusters, from greenish-white to cream in color, appear in April or May.The Joshua tree grows across a wide area—from the Mojave Desert north to the southern Owens Valley and east through southern Nevada to southwestern Utah and western Arizona. Growing at an elevation of 6,000 feet, the Joshua trees in Arrastre Canyon are near their altitudinal limit. Due to deep well-drained soils and moderate precipitation here, the Joshua trees in this canyon grow to greater dimensions than those anywhere else. This short hike, on doubletrack all the way, passes some of the largest Joshua trees in existence and ends at the impressive champion Joshua tree.The variety of plant life and the open feeling of the piñon woodland combine to make this a thoroughly pleasing, leisurely stroll."