Pinkham Canyon Road

Joshua Tree National Park, California

Distance15.7mi
Elevation Gain1,670ft
Trailhead Elevation3,156ft
Top3,341ft
Elevation Min/Max2172/3341ft
Elevation Start/End3156/3174ft

Pinkham Canyon Road

Pinkham Canyon Road is a hiking, biking, and horse trail in Riverside County, California. It is within Joshua Tree National Park. It is 15.7 miles long and begins at 3,156 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 31.7 miles with a total elevation gain of 1,670 feet. This trail connects with the following: Thermal Canyon Road and Pinkham Canyon Road.

Pinkham Canyon Road Professional Reviews and Guides

"Pinkham Canyon is an easy to moderate 4WD trail within Joshua Tree National Park. Park fees are applicable. The trail leaves opposite the Cottonwood Visitor Center, which is an excellent place to gather park information, inquire about road conditions, or stroll through the native plant garden trying to identify the vegetation commonly found within the park. The trail is initially graded to provide access to a park service road, before becoming a single-width, formed trail. It is well used and easy to follow as it crosses a gently sloping bajada and winds through abundant stands of Mojave yuccas toward a gap in the Cottonwood Mountains. The prominent peak to the north is Monument Mountain. Special Attractions: Trail crosses the transition zone between the Colorado and Mojave Deserts; Sandy canyon trail within Joshua Tree National Park. High-clearance 4WDs are preferred, but any high-clearance vehicle is acceptable. Expect a rough road surface; mud and sand are possible but will be easily passable. You may encounter rocks up to 6 inches in diameter, a loose road surface, and shelf roads, though these will be wide enough for passing or will have adequate pull-offs."

"I think you’ll be surprised by the relatively lush desert vegetation and beauty along this canyon drive."

Pinkham Canyon Road Reviews

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1/7/2010
A fairly easy trip, starting out with a simple trek across the desert and culminating in a fun ride down a wash. 4WD is essential, and passenger tires will probably not be good enough for some parts of the trip, particularly navigating some of the sand and rocks. Overall, a fine trip.
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11/8/2007
Nice trail, some sandy places but nothing too tough with a four wheel drive. Took appox. 2.5 hours
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10/15/2006
Fun ride. My second in my new stock FJCruiser. As mentioned by the previous review, there is a little tough spot about 3/4s through where you have to pick your way pretty carfully. Right after that is a windy spot between rocks that long wheelbase vehicles might struggle with. Lots of fairly deep sand, four wheel drive is essential, but I never feared getting stuck, just a fun sliding feeling going through the deeper stuff. Took about 1.45 hours at a good clip. One note, wider vehicles will be scraping brush throughout the entire first half of this trip, nothing serious, but if you obsess over your paint job, you might not be happy.
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2/7/2006
Pretty fun trail. There is a technical part at mile 15 that requires a high clearance vehicle, a narrow vehicle, or you should go around to the left and avoid the section altogether. You will find this narrow section shortly after the 1.5 foot rock drop off that should be manageable by most vehicles.
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Trail Information

Joshua Tree National Park
Nearby City
Joshua Tree National Park
Parks
Joshua Tree National Park
Local Contacts
ACSC San Diego, CRRA
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Oct 2018