Barker Dam Nature Trail
ElevationAscent: 52' 16 m
Descent: -45' -14 m
High: 4,288' 1,307 m
Low: 4,255' 1,297 m
GradeAvg Grade: 2% (1°)
Max Grade: 5% (3°)
Current trail conditions
Popular runs nearby
Hidden Valley Nature Trail
1.0 mi 1.7 km • Loop • 112 ft Ascent 34.11 m Ascent
Doubletrack Twentynine Palms, CA( 43 )
Lucky Boy Vista
3.7 mi 6.0 km • Out and Back • 216 ft Ascent 65.92 m Ascent
Singletrack Twentynine Palms, CA( 4 )
Skull Rock Nature Trail
1.8 mi 2.8 km • Loop • 147 ft Ascent 44.75 m Ascent
Singletrack Twentynine Palms, CA( 19 )
1.8 mi 2.9 km • Loop • 316 ft Ascent 96.44 m Ascent
Singletrack Palm Springs, CA( 5 )
Art Smith Trail to Cathedral Canyon
12.0 mi 19.4 km • Point to Point • 2,262 ft Ascent 689.58 m Ascent
Singletrack Rancho Mirage, CA( 3 )
Navigate on-trail with our free app
Run this trail?
Add details to help others plan their adventure.
“A trail to an interesting tank created in ~1900 to water live stock; Petroglyphs are an added bonus!”— Bill Rizzo
The trail is an easy run, though closed toed shoes are recommended due to cactus. From the parking lot, follow the rope fencing to get to the trailhead. The trail is clearly marked and the normal direction of travel is counterclockwise. At the top of the trail (north end) is the reservoir, and you'll be on the eastern end of it. As you move west you get closer to the actual dam and you'll be able to see the multiple building iterations more clearly if you pass it and turn back and face east. Shortly after passing the dam, you'll overlook an old cattle trough.
After passing the dam and the cattle trough, you'll start your return leg (south) and pass a Joshua Tree (with a sign). Continuing on, you'll come to a sign directing your either back to the trail split point or further on (about 20 meters) to a portion of rock with some petroglyphs. It is worth the 20 meters, but they have been re-drawn, which makes them easier to see. While informative, the "new" petroglyphs lose some of their magic.
Returning to the trail, you'll head down a small set of steps and end back up on the original trail approximately 300 meters from the car park.
This trail shares a parking lot with the Wall Street Mill Trail. Barker Dam Nature Trail is on the west side of the lot and the Wall Street Mill Trail is on the eastern side.
Land Manager: NPS - Joshua Tree National Park