Four Best Ways to Enjoy Joshua Tree National Park

Hey, all! A huge part of my personal reset was a desert getaway/girls trip that I was blessed to take with some of my best girlfriends. While just being with this group of high-achieving women is enough to recharge my soul, the activities and adventures we went on put me in the moment and taught me to appreciate that. In this post I want to share with you some of the things we did to accomplish a sense of adventure and piece-of-mind.

  1. Treat yourself to a Desert Oasis Airbnb

For our trip to Joshua Tree we chose to rent an Airbnb in Twenty Nine Palms which came out to a reasonable price for three nights when split between four people. We made sure to choose a rental home that allowed privacy, beauty, and of course a hot tub. The landscaping was beautiful at this home and in the evenings we enjoyed watching the sunset, gossiping around a campfire, and drinking wine in the hot tub.

Cactus, desert landscaping, oasis
Rock garden, cacti, and ornaments that beatified the outdoor space of our Airbnb.

The property was fenced in to deter animals and protect the fragile plants. The home was surrounded by rock gardens and the most beautiful golden barrel cacti. While the outside of the home was scattered with beautiful rocks, chimes, and scavenged pieces of metal and glass, the inside was a time capsule of Joshua Tree/Palm Springs turn-of-the-century memorabilia. Given this beauty and detail we had just as much interest staying at our “home” as we did exploring the National Park.

Such solitude with a group of best friends is a gift and allowed me to rest and reflect on my life.

  1. Go Bouldering and Hiking at Joshua Tree National Park

While there are a million designated hiking trails at Joshua Tree National Park, finding a good boulder to climb is just as important as finding a trail to trek. That is why we stopped at Jumbo Rock Campground! We were able to find a non-intrusive parking spot and walked to some HUGE boulders to climb and take pictures at. What was great was some of the girls were very adventurous while I was able to take some easier climbs and sit back. It was lovely and a great spot to meditate alone and also get together to chat about our next moves for the day.

A rock we saw while bouldering at Jumbo Rock Campground

On this trip and a past trip to Joshua Tree NP I also did some hiking trails! Each trail was fun and I can recommend both:

  • Queen’s Mine Trail
    • 0.7 – 1.6 mile loop
    • Great for viewing a preserved mine (you cannot enter the mine, mines are dangerous!)
  • Barker Dam
    • 1.1 mile loop
    • Also great for bouldering but a must for history buffs
  1. Native Plants and Medicinal Teas guided hike
Medicinal tea and desert plants hike
My tea cup I used on the Native Plants and Medicinal Teas guided hike

Airbnb offers a platform not just for vacation stays, but also a whole world of experiences offered by amazing people wanting to share their knowledge and recreational properties. In this case we found a woman that guides you on a hike to learn about plants native to Joshua Tree NP. She also shared teas made from the plants around her nearby home and showed us how to be conscious of plant life while on trail.

Bonus: we also bought matching teas cups from a craftsman at a Joshua Tree flee market. They are beautiful!

  1. Coffee Break at Joshua Tree Coffee Company
Coffee bags in the wild, Joshua Tree Coffee, hiking at Joshua tree first
Our haul of Joshua Tree Coffee Co after visiting for a iced brew!

One thing I love about my best friends is getting coffee together. Whether it is Starbucks or a cute Inland Empire roaster, we love to sit down and enjoy coffee together. One of my girlfriends on the trip actually first told me about Joshua Tree Coffee Company because she has a subscription for their coffee bags. I got an iced coffee and a bag of the breakfast blend. 

All I am saying is that when you got out, find a local coffee place you like. I am just so happy to know of a coffee roaster I adore in Joshua Tree. Charlie and I have really been enjoying our Joshua Tree Coffee Company breakfast blend at home, get yourself some!

I hope you enjoyed reading about some of my favorite and best things to do while visiting Joshua Tree NP, but I also home that in the future you can enjoy these things as well! Let me know which sounds the best or if you have done any of these things in the comments down below!

Love,

Sara

Wrapping up February

This month has been a roller coaster to say the least. Between moving, snow storms, and a high-desert getaway this has been one of my more busy and peaceful months since I left my job in September. While I think a lot of us may not associate “busy” and “peaceful” in the same breath, resetting my lifestyle in the past 6 months has helped me find great inner peace. It just took until February to unpack a lot of personal issues and concerns. This month I was able to face anxieties, find zen in the desert, and officially move to the Thumb Coast.

I have had a lot to think about as a temporary stay-at-home wife. While it was a huge privilege to call myself that, I was worrying myself with who I was in the world and what to do. Fortunately, I can say that I have restarted. This blog has allowed me to focus on a lifestyle I love and to dedicate myself to sustainability and backpacking. YOU reading this is keeping me accountable for living a more sustainable lifestyle and gives me a platform for sharing my hiking adventures. Thank you. On top of having this platform, I can say that I have found a part-time job. It is completely different from what I was doing before, but it is just the beginning of my restart.

Finding peace in these times is difficult, but a high desert get away also helped me gain faith in my restart. If you are able to, a desert retreat is refreshing. I hope to share this experience in the future and explain the precautions taken in these times. For now, please just trust that it is what I needed and I will be sharing this experience.

This month I was able to face anxieties, find zen in the desert, and officially move to the Thumb Coast.

Finally wrapping up this month, I officially live on the Thumb Coast and am really embracing #LakeLife! It took us longer than I’d like to admit to move from Lansing to the Lake Huron Coast but we are here and happy! While we still have to unpack, there is another stressor crossed off the books and I cannot wait to share my adventures now that we are here! Plus, now that we are out of Lansing I will share the trails I traversed and originally avoided sharing since they were so close to home.

February is about to pass and I am so thankful for everything that happened in this month. I am so happy with who I am as a person and our new home. Thank you for sharing this month with Sustaining Sara and for supporting me. Now please let me know how your February was in the comments below!

Love, 

Sara