Posted by: hikingfool | June 23, 2014

O10E Number 4: Self-Awareness

Wilderness Wisdom

11-01-03/29In this next installment of the “Other 10 Essentials” (O10E) let’s change directions a bit. The first three essentials dealt with becoming more mentally focused and in tune with the environment in which the outdoor adventurer moves;

• Awareness
• Mindfulness
• Connectedness

These elements coalesce into an amalgam that might be categorized as one’s state of mind. The next three essentials focus on the outdoor adventurer’s state of being. These essentials are not as esoteric as the first three, but they are important to consider as one enters into the very real and physical requirements that accompany outdoor activity.


Take stock of your physical condition and perhaps what boundaries exist for your stamina, outdoor abilities, and adventure skill level. This applies to the new hiker or the experienced mountaineer. Self-awareness demands an objective evaluation of what you can and cannot do.

It is fool hardy and…

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Posted by: hikingfool | February 23, 2010

My favorite hikes in Joshua Tree NP

In order of preference:

Lost Palms Oasis:  A 7 mile up-and-back that begins at Cottonwood Springs. For the first 3 miles, it is a moderate hike but increases in difficulty for the last .5 as you approach a deep canyon bearing a surprising number of California Palms.   You can add an additional 1.5 mile hike, the Mastadon Peak loop, which intersects with this trail.

This hike provides a wide variety terrain, views and fauna. The only thing it does not give you are Joshua Trees.

Lost Horse Mine: You can do this hike as un up-and-back to make it a 4 mile hike or do it as a loop for 6.2 miles.  It’s a moderately strenuous hike that gives you some great views of the park as you climb, as well as a great visit to an old gold and silver mine, complete with tipple and mill.

Pine City: A 3.5 mile up-and-back hike to the only pine trees in the park. A moderate hike that has options to make it much longer.  The trail leads to a collection of giant boulders shaded by California Juniper and Pinon Pine trees.  The “city” was apparently a small collection of wooden cabins inhabited by miners who worked the nearby Lucky Boy Mine.

Barker Dam / Petroglyphs Loop: An easy hike of maybe 1.5 miles. It takes you to the small lake created by a dam built to hold water for cattle then into a boulder lined valley.  There is a small side track to the “Movie Petroglyphs” named so because a movie crew enhanced ancient petroglyphs with some paint to make the filming of them easier. 

Hidden Valley Nature Trail: This easy hike is only 1 mile but is a complete delight. Do not pass it up.

Posted by: hikingfool | February 16, 2010

Hello world!

I hike. Let’s talk about it. Gimme a week or two and I’ll post some good stuff. Promise.