By Jackson Dodd

By Jackson Dodd

Hiking trails are certainly in abundance in the Palm Springs area. The Palm Springs Bureau of Tourism is a great resource for many outdoor activities in the valley.

Here, are the top 10 hikes, from easy to hard:

EASY
1) Andreas Canyon Trail – 2 mi., 50 ft. gain, 1 to 2 hrs – LOOP
Trailhead: in the Indian Canyons located on S. Palm Canyon Dr.
Admission charge; Information (760) 323-6018
A nice hike along a quiet stream with ledges of rock.

2) Tahquitz Canyon – 3.5 mi., 300 ft. gain, 2 to 3 hrs – IN-OUT
Trailhead: at the Tahquitz Visitor Center located on Mesquite Ave.
Admission charge; Information (760) 416-7044, 8AM –5 PM, last guided hike at 2 PM.
A guided nature hike to a spectacular 60-ft. waterfall on the Agua Caliente Reservation.

MODERATE 
3) Palm Springs Art Museum Trail – 2 mi., 900 ft. gain, 2 hrs – IN-OUT
Trailhead on Museum Drive at the back of the museum’s parking lot; Free
Excellent workout hike with a steep ascent to picnic tables with a view of the valley.

4) Murray Canyon Trail – 6 mi., 500 ft. gain, 4 hrs – IN-OUT
Trailhead in the Indian Canyons located on S. Palm Canyon Dr.
Admission charge; Information (760) 323-6018
Hike along a running stream and enjoy the cool tree canopy.

5) Araby Trail – 6 mi., 800 ft. gain, 4 hrs – IN-OUT
Trailhead on Rimrock/Southridge Road off of Hwy. 111; Free
This trail climbs above the Bob Hope Estate through spectacular scenery.

6) South Lykken Trail – 5 mi., 1,000 ft. gain, 4 hrs – SHUTTLE
2 Trailheads: south on South Palm Canyon Road 250 ft. after Canyon Heights Road; north at the end of Mesquite; Free
A great exercise hike climbing the hillside to picnic tables at each end with panoramic vista

7) North Lykken Trail – 5 mi., 1,000 ft. gain, 4 hrs – SHUTTLE
2 Trailheads: south at the end of Ramon Road; north on Cielo Dr. off Panorama Dr.; Free
Start from the south, ascending moderately to the picnic tables above the museum. Continue on, dropping down to the trail that winds below the ridgeline behind the Las Palmas dam. Rest at picnic tables then head down to Cielo Drive.

HARD
8) Maynard Mine Trail – 7 mi., 2,200 ft. gain, 5 hrs – IN-OUT
Trailhead in the Indian Canyons located on S. Palm Canyon Dr.; Admission charge; Information (760) 323-6018
Start out on the Murray Canyon trail, climbing steeply. Soon you see a rock pile marker indicating where to turn onto the Maynard Mine Trail. This trail is very steep and exposed but the reward at the top is the adventure of exploring the old tungsten mine.

9) Murray Hill – 8 mi., 2,100 ft. gain, 6 hrs – IN-OUT
Trailhead off of Bogert Drive; see map and description in 140 Great Hikes in and Near Palm Springs by Philip Ferranti; Free
After a steep climb you follow a ridge of rolling hills with views of both sides of the valley, ending atop Murray Hill.

10) Skyline Trail – 10 mi., 8,000 ft. gain – 7 to 9 hrs – HIKE UP/TRAM DOWN
Trailhead on Museum Dr.-at back of the museum’s parking lot (same as for Map #3); Free
A hike of extremes – most beautiful views, best workout, most varied vegetation, NO water, and easiest downhill – you ride the tram! Note that extreme care is required in planning and preparation for this hike since spring and fall provide the only windows of opportunity to hike all the way. Winter can bring snow and frigid weather at the top and summer is much too hot.

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