We spent almost 8 hours in the Park, and saw so many things, including Joshua trees, Mojave yuccas, cholla cacti, ocotilla, beavertail pricklypear, barrel cacti, a Sonoran Gopher snake, a number of lizards, huge ants, including a large red ant, birds, butterflies, ground squirrel, etc. There were lots of boulder formations in JTNP. The boulders were big - some were even bigger than me and I felt tiny. A lot of people were rock-climbing.
In a lot of places, it looked like there were not many things around, but scientists reckon that there are over 1.5 million Joshua trees in JTNP, and over 750 species of plants there. The tallest Joshua tree is over 43 feet, but we did not get to see it. Joshua trees do not have growth rings, so it is hard to estimate their ages.
Nowadays, there is only 2-3 inches of rain a year, but there used to be 10 inches of rain each year. At that time, there were lots of cattle ranchers in the area. People used to mine in JTNP, and we saw the remains of one mine. We walked to Barker Dam and we saw petroglyphs which had been drawn by local Indians a long time ago.
Whilst we were in the Park, Karl & I completed a workbook so that we could become Junior Rangers. Some of the things we had to do were to spot different plants and animals, write a poem, and draw pictures. We got our Junior Rangers badge from Ranger Sarah, who is a real National Park Service Ranger.
We finished our day by having dinner at a local cafe, Crossroads Cafe.