Woman hiking in California desert

Reopened and Ready

After Tropical Storm Hilary, some of our national parks in desert locations were closed due to intense damage. The good news is they've recently re-opened, and fall brings cooler temps. From less-known canyons to perfect peaks for sunset, here are three unique desert hiking experiences open to you!

Week: 11.08.2023
Regions: Northern & Southern CA

Canyons Calling

Mosaic Canyon and Desolation Canyon Hikes in Death Valley National Park

Woman hiking up to views from Desolation Canyon in Death Valley National Park
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Canyon hikes come in all shapes and sizes in Death Valley, and we’ve got two gems. One requires more rigorous scrambling and navigation, and leads to a dryfall; the other takes you up to a brilliant vista.
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The Unexpected Wonders of Monterey

Exploring Beyond the Monterey Bay Aquarium

Point Pinos Lighthouse
Monterey Recreation Path
woman painting Monterey
One of the world’s best teachers? Mother Nature. And one of the best destinations to learn from her? The Monterey Bay Aquarium. Spend a few hours at the Aquarium, then take your pick of self-guided walks...
Plan Your Visit to the Monterey Bay Aquarium

The Holey Spirit

Hike Hole in the Wall Rings Loop in the Mojave Desert

hiker going up a ring cable in Hole in the Wall Rings Loop Trail in the Mojave Desert
Hiker heading up to hike through a canyon in Hole in the Wall Rings Loop in Mojave Desert
Hiker going up between canyon walls at hole in the wall canyon Mojave desert
Hiker coming out of a canyon at Hole in the Wall Rings Loop Trail Mojave Desert
Hole-in-the-Wall Rings Loop Trail serves up the best parts of the Mojave Desert, all in a 1.3-mile loop: vista views, rare geological features, and even a climb through a slot canyon.
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The Ryan King

Hike Ryan Mountain in Joshua Tree National Park

Hike to Ryan Mountain Joshua Tree National Park
At 5,456 feet, the summit of Ryan Mountain has the best view in the park. Its brilliant panoramic expanse, spanning desert to mountains, and—bonus—late afternoons can feature a sky tinged with lavender thanks to the low-sitting sun.
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Trending Stories NorCal

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  1. Camp and Kayak at Utica Reservoir in Stanislaus National Forest

    Sleeper Hit

    It's all about the water, and the camping, at Utica Reservoir in Stanislaus National Forest, a High Sierra reservoir perfect for kayak explorations and pitching your tent with the lake in the background.

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  2. Wapama Wows

    Hetch Hetchy can be overlooked in Yosemite National Park because of its more remote location and limited facilities. But this is where you’ll also find one of the best day hikes in the park: Wapama Falls.

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  3. Sheep Tight!

    You’re not going to have to count sheep to get a good night’s sleep at Sheep Dung’s beautiful property in Anderson Valley near Boonville. Four modern cottages—tucked far apart from each other among 500 acres of rolling hills—are designed for blissful solitude. And it’s dog-friendly!

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  4. Hike Mount Tamalpais into Muir Woods

    Muir Woods Through the Backdoor

    A backdoor entrance into Muir Woods? Hike a tranquil trail that starts in Mount Tamalpais State Park and quietly leads into Muir Woods, letting you avoid the busyness of the main parking area.

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Trending Stories SoCal

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  1. All the Wright Stuff

    Avoiding drama? That’s a good thing. Unless you’re talking about campsites. In that case, the more dramatic the better! And Wright’s Beach on the Sonoma Coast is quite the drama queen—27 campsites sitting smack dab in the middle of the wild and raging Sonoma Coast State Beach.

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  2. kirk creek campground big sur

    Sur Bet!

    You can spend $1,000 a night for an ocean-view room in Big Sur. Or you can spend $45 and wake up to the sound of crashing waves and incredible views of Big Sur’s coastline when staying at Kirk Creek Campground.

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  3. Secret Redwoods + Camping by the River

    Grizzly Creek Redwoods State Park is a little-known gem where skyscraping reds (the tallest living trees in the world!) fly under the radar. Grizzly’s ironically small size and location off the beaten path provide near total seclusion, not to mention relaxing camping!

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  4. Three Falling

    Three waterfalls, and fewer people. McCloud Falls might be the best waterfall hike in Northern California. There are bigger waterfalls in the state, but it’s the whole package that makes this 4-mile (round-trip) hike truly memorable.

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