JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK – Ryan Ranch Trail Twentynine Palms, California

Expedition Team: Dave Miller, Rosie Miller        Expedition Date: October 4, 2019

In the park there were thousands of Joshua trees everywhere along with varieties of cacti and desert habitat.  Some Joshua trees grew 40 feet tall.  We hiked the 2 mile Ryan Ranch Trail to a ghost town, we kept a wary eye open for rattlesnakes, desert tortoises, iguanas & bighorn sheep.  The Ryan Brothers homesteaded this plot of land in the late 1800’s when the nearby Lost Horse Mine, the most successful gold mine in the area,  was just about near its peak production.  The trail is moderate with an 80 foot climb past yucca, black bush, creostone and twisted Joshua trees.  The house ruins remain well intact (Photos #5 & #6) built by strong adobe bricks and gives off a distinctive sheen or shine at night due to gold flakes mixed in the adobe bricks.  Nearby are ruins (Photos #7-#10) of outbuildings that once housed 60 people and abandoned mining machinery.  I saw something in the ground, dug and discovery an circa 1900 tin can.

A third stop, the Hidden Valley Trail, was once used by cattle rustlers. We viewed “Old Woman’s Face in  Rock” (Photo#11) used in a scene of the 1965 movie “The Satan Bug”. Also, many rock climbers were climbing high on the rocks.

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