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    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    Very Easy
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    37 m
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    3.2 km
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    User Ratings
    These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Physical DIFF
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Technical DIFF
    Directions to Trailhead

    Split Rock Trail

    Panoramic views from the Split Rock trail hike in Joshua Tree National Park

    Download an interactive map and guide on your phone today!

    Table of contents

    Weaving in and out of towering cliffs, slick boulders, and one of the densest collections of rock formations in the park, the Split Rock Trail is a photographer’s dream. Throughout this relatively easy flat loop trail you can enjoy amazing atmosphere, suitable for the whole family.

    Route Description for Split Rock Trail

    This well marked loop can be completed in either direction. Simply, follow the trail from the parking lot and take your pick! The hike remains almost completely flat for its entirety, making it fantastic for young children, older folks, or those just wanting a quick jaunt in the park.

    The main attraction of this hike is the impressive rock formations that permeate the entire trail. Made of monzogranite rock, and formed over 100 million years ago when magma cooled into monzogranite beneath the surface of the earth, these formations are the most well known part of the park!

    Over time, water eroded sections of the rock to help form the impressive structures we witness today. Flash floods have since helped isolate these rocky islands, washing away the abutting sand and adding to their natural beauty.

    On the Eastern part of the loop you will come to a fork. If you want, take the 0.8 km extension towards face rock. Otherwise, continue along the loop and return to your car.

    Insider Hints for Split Rock Trail

    • Even though this is a short hike, in the intense summer heat it can still be difficult. Always be conscious of the heat and especially the sun exposure. Bring lots of water.

    Getting to the Split Rock Trail Trailhead

    The fastest way to get to the trail, even from Joshua Tree Town, is through 29 Palms. If coming from Joshua Tree Town, head east along Highways 62 (29 Palms Highway) towards 29 Palms. Turn right onto Utah Trail, with signs for Joshua Tree National Park. After entering the park and paying your dues, follow Park Boulevard for just under 11.3 km. Turn right towards the picnic area marked as Split Rock. Follow the dirt road to the trailhead.

    Route Information

    • When to do:

      Spring and Fall, avoid summer heat

    • Backcountry Campsites:


    • Toilets:

      At trailhead

    • Family friendly:


    • Route Signage:


    • Crowd Levels:


    • Route Type:


    Split Rock Trail Elevation Graph

    Weather Forecast

    Check Area Weather


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