After the Mosaic Canyon, which you can read about here, we went back to Las Vegas for an overnight. Then the next morning we took back roads through the Mojave National Preserve on our way to Joshua Tree National Park. Once again.we were distracted while driving when we saw a small wooden sign that said “Hole in the Wall, 15 miles” pointing south. So, of course, we headed south to check out what this Hole in the Wall was all about because hubby, being the avid western lover, wondered if it had anything to do with the Hole in the Wall Gang. Even though we found out it actually did not, it was the best detour we ever made, the trail curving around mountains on a rough gravel and dirt road where we felt like we were all by ourselves! There was actual snow on the ground as we neared the tops of the mountains winding our way on until we reached the Hole in the Wall Visitor Center.
In the above picture hubby is sitting at a picnic area which was beside the Visitor Center. A good clue that it was pretty cold out is hubby wearing a jacket! The park ranger in the visitor center had to be the most enthusiastic, vivacious ranger I have ever met, and I don’t think I will ever forget her. She made us wish we could spend the entire day here, but instead we informed her we were just driving through but planned to come back at some point. When I asked about a quick nature trail we could go on, she pointed us to a circular path starting right there at the visitor’s center and at the end of the trail there were rings set in the stone to help us crawl out of the canyon and back to our cars. At the mention of that challenge we were off!
With the sun warm on our backs, we headed out just enjoying the landscape as it was so very different from Iowa. The cactus fascinated me. When we were out of the wind, it was actually a beautiful day.
There were boulders with petroglyphs as seen above and just stunning views of towering mountain bluffs as seen below.
As we walked, we thought we understood why it was called the Hole in the Wall Visitor Center, although the park ranger told us no one is absolutely sure why the area was named this way. It’s doubtful it had to do with the Hole in the Wall gang though. The stones and bluffs had so many holes in them, as you can see in the pictures, and that is why I think it is named that way. Hubby was wishing he had his boys with him because the holes sure made for easy climbing. I, however, was doing none of that!
There were a lot of interesting formations.
We finally reached the ring area, and as you can see below, we had some climbing to do so we went through the opening where hubby is in the picture and came to the actual rings.
I know it doesn’t look bad but towards the end it was tough for me. Where they had the rocks perched up there to help out wasn’t so bad, but by the time I got to the last two, I had to take a breather before just pulling myself up and actually stepping on the rings themselves to boost me up. Oh, I forgot to mention there were two different sets of these rings. I found it pretty easy to do once I quelled the fear that kept rising up as I wondered about what it would feel like to fall. I am definitely not an adrenaline junkie!
Maybe the picture below shows the drop better. This is from the top of the first set of rings looking back down where I had gone.
Once we reached the top, we ended up by a campground and just walked the road a block or so back to our car. Hubby loved this. He wanted to go around again! It was dark by the time we got to our hotel in Palm Desert, but Joshua Tree National Park was on the schedule for next morning!