Joshua Tree Run

It's never just one thing that leads to a great run. The run at Joshua Tree was great for so many different reasons. The weather was beautiful, we were running on a gorgeous desert trail through a remote part of the park, Toby had put together a good plan, invited some great people, and the pace was relaxed. Or maybe it was because two weeks ago I didn't think there was a chance I could do any part of the Joshua Tree Traverse due to my shoulder separation. It could also have been the flow, the conversation, the mile markers ticking off faster than they normally do, or the fact that I wasn't going too far, just 23 miles of the 39 mile traverse. What made this run great was a mixture of all those things, plus Carlyn's glitter-bombed rainbow shorts.

I'm not going to write too much about the details and logistics of the traverse...I'll leave that in the capable hands of Jess, Toby, Ben, Paul and Carlyn. They did the traverse, crossing Joshua Tree via the California Riding and Hiking Trail. They let me be a tourist on their journey through the park complete with my fanny pack and shoulder sling (I couldn't carry a pack, so I looked to my Western European ancestors for a method of transporting gear easily and stylishly).

(Photo by Jess)

(Photo by Jess)

I'd be lying if I said it wasn't a little difficult watching the line of friends wind down the trail as I turned into the wind to head back to my car, happy that I was finished, but envious of the reward that comes after enduring the pain, and completing a journey. It was such an amazing run, and I wanted to keep that feeling going, although I knew stopping was the smart thing to do, and really the only option. I'm hoping that this becomes a regular route that we can do again, hopefully recreating some of the magic of the run, and next time I hope to be a traveler instead of a tourist.

Thanks for reading. Here are some pictures from the Joshua Tree run.

4 AM wake-up in time to watch the Super Moon set.

Breaking camp and getting the gear ready for the 5 AM start.

The trails are well maintained, near-perfect, single track bliss.

Is this still a thing?

Aid station at 19 miles.

My turnaround point.



  1. Amazing - how'd you manage to run in a sling?!! Great photos, so different from the landscape we have here, must be hot too!

    1. The weather wasn't too bad. We started early and it was probably high 70s when they finished. The sling worked well for the run and helped minimize the movement of the shoulder. I did my first run without it today, so...progress.


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