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gem icon Barker Dam [Suggest Edits]

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Description

Though Joshua Tree National Park is located in the midst of a large desert, the area was historically used by ranchers who managed to raise cattle in the arid climate. A visit to the Barker Dam will highlight the perseverance required to raise livestock, as well as the creative approach that locals had to to take to survive the harsh climate.

Today, you’re more likely to witness local birds or bighorn sheep drinking from the water stored behind the dam than you are to see cattle, and this is one of the most popular places to observe local wildlife. The dam itself was constructed in two stages. The lower portion of the dam was created by ranchers in the early 1900's, but William Keys and his family raised the dam by another six feet in the 1950's. The division between the two portions is easy to spot and makes for an interesting history lesson.

A mild trail leads to the dam, and this is an especially good choice in the spring. Early springtime visitors will enjoy the improbably blue waters of the lake, the boulders that rise directly from the waters, and a chance to admire the handiwork of ranchers from a century ago. This is a great place to take photos and to enjoy the contrast of the water with the surrounding desert.

Short Hike: The short Barker Dam Nature Trail will lead hikers to the dam and back in about 1.5 miles of easy trail.

Family Friendly: The trail leading to the dam is fairly short, and this improbable collection of water makes for an interesting if unexpected viewpoint to admire.

Gem Type: Historic Site

Shared by:
Mikhaila Redovian

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Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Dec 31, 2018
Colton James
New Years Eve hike!
Dec 26, 2018
דן גלבוע
Dec 10, 2018
Arnold Bishop
Dec 10, 2018
S.L. Hall
Nov 24, 2018
Luis Barreto Jr
Nov 23, 2018
Kurtis Gehman
Nov 20, 2018
Andrew Waterbury
Nov 4, 2018
Tyler Rosier
A shirt quick loop trail that features a dam, rock piles and wildlife. There was a small amount of water when we hiked this in early Nov, 2018.

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Shared by Mikhaila Redovian on May 25, 2017. All Page Views: 2,204. Last Month: 214.