Joshua Tree

Snow in Joshua Tree National Park

Does it snow in Joshua Tree National Park? Sure does. With elevations going up to 5500 feet, an occasional snowfall happens here in this part of the Mojave Desert; it’s called the “high desert” for a reason.

With rainfall itself being scarce, snow is even more rare; however, snow has fallen in JTNP for at least the last two years of 2020 and in January of 2021. The months of December, January and February are probably the only times you might encounter a glorious snow covered desert, and you’re lucky if you’re here when it happens.

Shortly after writing this, it began snowing at the park! So that’s March 12, 2021 with snowfall in Joshua Tree National Park and the surrounding high desert towns. 

We weren’t able to make it to the park right away when it was super thick and fluffy, and everything was covered, but still found plenty of snow to play around in. 

Definitely had enough snow to make a 5 year old’s day!!

Above, we see the Californian “this will do” snow gear: 2 pairs of non-waterproof pants (and 2 extras in the car), layer all the warm things on top, mittens (wet/frozen), rain boots.

With the sun setting, it was even colder than it looks, and we’re lucky we had sun and just a little wind.

This last photo is taken from our home in 29 Palms. The snow covered mountains are the north side border of JTNP. All of that was melted away by the end of the day.

Snow in the desert will teach you to seize the moment. There’s no “oh, we’ll just go tomorrow” because it will already be gone. Glad we were around and had this opportunity to play. We’re pretty sure our daughter has seen snow once before, but this is what she was gleefully calling “my first snow!!” and I’m so dang happy we could experience it together in this weird vast desert we call our home.

- Julie

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