The popular 49 Palms Joshua Tree trail is known for its incredible desert palm tree oasis destination. To reach it, you must trek 3 miles round-trip. Those who complete it will receive an amazing panoramic view of the desert. What many may forget though is that this is also the home of many beautiful desert animals like the bighorn sheep.
In an effort to help these animals to get to water, the Joshua Tree National Park announced the trail closure effective on June 1st. “The park is under extreme drought conditions and herds in the area are increasingly reliant on the oasis spring to survive the hot summer months.” said the park in a statement.
Starting today, June 1, the 49 Palms Trail will be closed to allow bighorn sheep undisturbed access to the oasis water. Under current drought conditions, herds must rely on this water to survive. The closure will remain until summer monsoons increase water availability. pic.twitter.com/YCK2RNwEah
— Joshua Tree NPS (@JoshuaTreeNPS) June 1, 2022
It’s no secret that California has been in a drought for over the past three years. Joshua Tree Park has taken quite the hit along with its plants and animals. Usually these sheep rely on fresh grass to stay hydrated, but with current weather conditions, these animals must trek to get their fluids. “The closure will remain in place until summer monsoons provide adequate rainfall to increase water availability.” said the park in a statement, “Park wildlife biologists will be monitoring the situation.”
To help with the park’s conservation efforts, you can donate or volunteer. Find more information here.