|  Home  |  Canada Trips  |  US Trips  |  Hiking  |  Snowshoeing  |  Map  About

Pushawalla Loop
Coachella Valley, California
January 21, 2020

Distance: 7.3 km (4.5 mi)
Cumulative Elevation Gain: 175 m (574 ft

We could hardly visit Palm Springs without visiting one of the palm oases in the area. There's nothing like seeing palm trees growing wild in their natural setting. To see them we chose to hike Pushawalla Loop.

Most of the people we saw on the trail were doing Pushawalla Loop counterclockwise: climbing the ridge, dropping down to the oasis, and then coming back on the wash. But Dinah and I did the loop clockwise, saving the ridge for last. Coming back high up the ridge would give us the best view of the San Jacinto and San Bernardino Mountains, putting them in front of us. The disadvantage, as one older gentleman pointed out, meant descending a canyon full of loose rocks which is easier to manage going up. But that mattered little to us.

Within minutes of starting, we came to a fork and kept left to follow the trail in the wash. There's little to see here, so we were glad when the trail climbed the plateau-like east end of the ridge. We crossed it, following the trail to the canyon leading to the palms. After dropping down into a valley on the other side, the palm oasis was nearby.

The first palms were especially dense. A trail on the left skirts around them, but it's more fun to take the trail that plunges right through the trees, a brief but veritable jungle. After emerging, there were more palms to see but they were spread out. We hiked down the valley to the second canyon where a trail climbs the ridge.

Here the ridge top is still plateau-like, but ahead it rises to a distinctive crest, a real ridge. We were soon on the highest point. Unfortunately, clouds prevented us from seeing much of the mountains to the west. Even so, we enjoyed the long ridgewalk. We followed the trail as it snaked along the crest before dropping down to the fork we had reached earlier. A more satisfying ending than if we had come out on the featureless wash.

KML and GPX Tracks

Pushawalla Loop includes traversing this low, nameless ridge

Starting up the trail

A few minutes later we came to a fork. We went left, into the wash. Right climbs the ridge.

Hiking up the wash/trail

Dinah passes a solitary dead palm tree

The trail exits the wash

The trail climbs above a wash

A short time later we crossed the plateau-like east end of the ridge

The trail briefly follows a road

The trail starts down a canyon

Loose rock extends all the way to the bottom

Some people might prefer going up the rocky canyon instead of down

Looking up the trail after reaching the bottom

The palm oasis is a short distance from the canyon. The thickest grove is ahead.

Dinah pushes her way through the trees

I'm right behind her

Looking straight up

Coming out the dense grove

We continued through the trees

The palms stretch along the valley

Heading to the exit canyon

Unlike the canyon we came down, this one has no loose rocks

The trail heads to the top of the ridge

Continuing up

The trail climbs the ridge ahead. San Jacinto Peak is seen poking above the clouds on the left.

Looking down at Pushawalla Palms

The highest point is ahead

The ridge trail extends ahead

Behind and below us is the trail in the wash

We'll soon be back at the parking lot

Thousand Palms (4.5 mi, 866 ft, 331 ft)

U.S. Trips | Home