Destination: Jumbo Rocks Campground, Joshua Tree National Park, Twentynine Palms, CA
In September 2015 @the_brenliest and I took our first cross country road trip together! We had a jam packed week of adventure and we knew after that trip that we wanted to see ALL THE PLACES together!
One of our favorite destinations on that trip was visiting Joshua Tree National Park in Twentynine Palms, California. This was the most spectacular place! We saw rain, rainbows, gorgeous sunrises and sunsets! In the Jumbo Rocks area where we camped there are boulders everywhere for you to freely explore and climb on. We were seriously like 2 kids on Christmas morning filled with awe and excitement!
This year we’ve decided it is time to take our kids out west to experience all that is Joshua Tree! We opened caravan invitations for friends and family to join us, but alas many aren’t very keen on our 5000+ mile road trips with kids in tow. We are often asked, “HOW do you do it?!”
The secrets to affordable road trips!
- Plan ahead!
- Waiting until the last minute will inflate costs, not allow you to find lodging and have you a frazzled mess trying to get everything together to head out the door!
- Schedule, but don’t let it make or break your trip!
- Having a general idea of what you’d like to accomplish is a great idea. Trying to adhere to that schedule exactly will leave you feeling very unfulfilled and stressed. At the end of your trip you’ll have checked things off, but it could leave you wishing you spent more time just enjoying being together.
- Camp to really experience the outdoors!
- Camping will save you a TON of money! A lot of campgrounds have shower houses, yes, I know not all are created equal, but they will get the stink off feet. You will also have a much more personal connection with the places you visit if you sleep outside there.
- Snacks in the car for 1 to 2 meals a day.
- A healthy cereal that can be eaten dry is the best snack! We typically choose Frosted Mini Wheats. We also keep NutriGrain bars, crackers and protein bars on hand, too!
- Stop at rest areas and avoid taking the little people into gas stations!
- Getting in and out of rest areas with our 5 kids is typically a 20 minute stop. Everyone packs a water bottle(needed for hiking anyway!) and they refill those at the rest areas! This is a huge cost saver as they are not going inside of a gas station and seeing all those snack foods, sodas and other expensive items! PLUS, gas station restrooms are often iffy and can have long lines that add hours to your trip after a few stops!
- Arch Rock – Easy – 0.5 mile
- Ryan Mountain – Moderate – 2.9 mile
- Hidden Valley – Easy – 1 mile loop
- Lost Horse Mine – Moderate – 4 to 6 miles
- Mastodon Peak Trail – Moderate – 2.5 mile loop
- Samuelson’s Rocks – Unmarked – 3 mile
- Eagle Cliff Mine – Unmarked – 3.5 mile
- Geology Tour Road – Motor Tour – 18 miles
Explore Joshua Tree
I can’t wait to come back from our road trip to Joshua Tree and share our many adventures with the kids! I hope you’ll come back and enjoy the photos!