Old Dale Road is an old mining road in Joshua Tree NP

Old Dale Road is a scenic drive located in Joshua Tree National Park, in the US state of California. This old mining road traverses the eastern portion of the park from north to south It’s one of the famous backcountry roads in the Joshua Tree National Park.

Old Dale Road

Where is Old Dale Road?

The trail is located in Riverside County, in the southern portion of California, within the mountains of Joshua Tree National Park.

How long is Old Dale Road?

This iconic trail is totally unpaved. It’s 41.68km (25.9 miles) long, winding through a variety of mines that were built and worked as early as the 1880s and as late as the 1990s.

Where does Old Dale Road start and end?

The journey commences within Joshua Tree National Park, traverses the scenic Pinto Basin, and exits the park into the rugged terrain of the Pinto Mountains, transitioning into Gold Crown Road. Finally, the path concludes at California Route 62, situated 15 miles to the east of the quaint desert community of Twentynine Palms.

Is Old Dale Road challenging?

The dirt road snaking through the valley is pretty challenging with lots of sharp rocks and deep sand. About two-thirds of the road is well-graded dirt and the usual washboard. Only the portion across the mountain range can be tricky in several spots. The road, composed of large, loose, and sometimes sharp rock with steep drop-offs, is not maintained. 4x4 vehicles with high clearance only.

Is Old Dale Road remote?

Remember it’s a remote area with no cell reception and limited traffic. Bring a GPS; it is easy to get lost. Two cars would be safer than one if any problems come up.

How long does it take to drive Old Dale Road?

Plan 1.5 to 2 hours to complete the drive without any stops.

When is the best time to drive Old Dale Road?

The road is open year-round; however, it’s best from October through May. The weather in this zone is harsh. Summer trips are not recommended. If you take this trip, it's best not to do it in the summer as it gets very hot, traversing the two deserts that make up Joshua Tree National Park: the Colorado and the Mojave.
Pic: By Daniel Mayer (mav) [CC BY-SA 3.0  (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], from Wikimedia Commons