Tell someone you’re going hiking, they usually assume you’re heading to the mountains, maybe the coast. But California’s deserts offer sublime hikes. Just not in the summer. So we’re wrapping up our extended stay in the California desert this week with ideas for memorable family hikes.
The national parks and monuments offer world-class hiking opportunities, so yes, do plan to hoof it through Death Valley—November into March is best—and try out trails in Joshua Tree. Also prime is immense Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, well south, between San Diego and the Salton Sea.