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“Good... but a long hike”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of Lost Horse Mine

Lost Horse Mine
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Level Contributor
62 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Good... but a long hike”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 21, 2014

It was a decent hike and the mine / processing plant was pretty interesting, but the scenery did not come close to matching the main areas in Joshua tree.

Visited July 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank David D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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58 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
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English first
Solihull, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
104 reviews
62 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
“Great walk”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 28, 2014

It was a really nice walk to the Lost Horse mine in this fantastic national park, and beyond the mine to continue with the Lost Horse Loop trail.
You take the two mile hike to the mine through stunning peaceful scenery and just try to imagine how tough life must have been for the miners who worked this mine. Do not expect any excitement at the mine, it is more about its location on the hill sides. The option then is to continue the Loop trail or walk back to the car park. I did the full trail, taking just over 2 hours in total time. If I went again I would walk to the mine and continue the Loop trail until getting to an isolated stone chimney (the only remnant of an old cottage) then turn back and retrace my steps. The reason for this being is that the views are great until about reaching the chimney, but the last part of the trail is flat and not so interesting. Regardless I did still very much enjoy the walk.
Whilst I was doing the full loop (bit over 6 miles) my wife went to the mine and came back. She has serious knee challenges with one already replaced, so if she can do it, many other people can. It is not what I would call steep. We would both recommend. Just need to be aware that the car park at the trail head is quite small.
We went at 9am on a warm February morning so wore just hat, shorts and a T-shirt.
Do of course remember to take plenty of water.

Visited February 2014
Helpful?
5 Thank John46H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Yokosuka, Japan
Level Contributor
65 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Easy Hike, Nice Views”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 26, 2014

I enjoyed this hike, it is very easy, just a few semi-steep hills. There are some wonderful views of the valley. It's pretty breezy, so make sure to dress appropriately! Even the view driving into the park was wonderful, but this was a great trail to hike. There is an entrance fee to get into the park, but if you are in the military or a military dependent, make sure to bring your ID, you get a free annual pass (as of Jan 2014).

Visited February 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank IRoseA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Clemente, California
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Mellow Hike to a Fenced Off Mine”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 15, 2014

I've been to Joshua Tree a handful of times mainly for the rock scrambling/climbing and various hikes. Have done the hike to the dam a few times and we were on our way out of the park that day with some time to kill so we figured we'd try something new. The mine sounded different and interesting so we opted for that.

The hike itself is not bad. It's not grueling by any means and the trails are clear, passing some of your standard desert sites, namely cactus and rocks. We came across a what looked like an old building foundation or maybe storage place built of stacked rocks and poked around for a while before heading further up the trail. There were some good views of the surrounding valleys once you made the gradual ascent. The final payoff of the mine was somewhat lackluster. It's fenced off with an unsightly chain link fence surrounding it, which when I first saw it was a bit of a letdown. It's understandable considering that the exterior of the mine has been defaced with paint pens and undoubtedly people sneak in and around the mine if and when the fence is low enough to hop.

All in all the hike was some nice exercise and wasn't all that crowded considering the zoo that had amassed for the ideal weather conditions for the time of year and that was populating the Hidden Valley and Skull Rock areas. However the mine wasn't all that much to behold and until the park adds something to it, I'm not in a big rush to make it back there when the park has so much else to offer. The story of the mine is more interesting than the mine itself, so maybe pick up a pamphlet and read about it on a hike or to beneath atop a more picturesque vantage point.

Visited January 2014
Helpful?
3 Thank christiansenrud
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fullerton
Level Contributor
31 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Mine deserves to remain lost…”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 28, 2013

If there was something worthwhile at the end of the line this wouldn’t be so bad. But there are so many other great trails to hike, why waste your time with this one? The trail is basically unimproved, so it has lots of ruts, rocks and twists and turns to it. Most of it has steep inclines followed by moderate drops, so you’re going up and down the whole way. Not a strenuous walk if you’re in moderately good shape or stop occasionally to rest. Because of the incline you will swear the trail is longer than 2 miles, but the downhill return trip will restore your faith in the accuracy of pedometers. There is no shade except in the late afternoon hours when the sun falls behind some of the hills.
Extremely quiet! Only passed 2 people going in and 4 people returning.
The only good view is about 3/4 of the way in when you can see the entire valley and surrounding mountains. Other than that all you see is rocks and desert scrub. Then you reach the mine and it is fenced off. Can’t see anything. Boring destination deflated a somewhat enjoyable hike. Kind of like driving 100 miles to go to Disneyland just to find out it’s closed and all you can do is look through the fence at the rides.
It takes twice as long to get in as to return – the 2-3 hour estimate on sign is accurate for most. We went Memorial Day weekend and weather was in the low 80s. Took water, but didn’t really need it. Would recommend hats and sunglasses. Gate closes at dusk so you should plan for this. Fairly clean restroom in the parking lot – no running water so bring hand sanitizer.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank James T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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