Great Times, Great Friends, Great Outdoors

Cottonwood Camp Joshua Tree Park

  • Thu, April 26, 2018
  • 12:00 PM
  • Sun, April 29, 2018
  • 12:00 PM
  • Cottonwood Campground Joshua Tree Park
  • 23


  • Both Driver and Passengers need to register individually and pay the fee.
  • This category is reserved for the Trip Leader(s). Members who lead camping trips are not charged for the event. Please consider leading a camping trip.
  • For joining one of our planned hikes. Free.

GO members must be logged with your username and password in order to register. If you are a member of another GO Chapter, please contact in order to be added to this system (for free).
Registration is closed

Tucked away in the south end of Joshua Tree National Park at an elevation of 3,000-feet, the campground offers unparalleled views of the Colorado Desert with wide, dark and uninterrupted views of the night sky. Scenic Cottonwood campground offers a variety of nearby hiking and touring activities and cooler temperatures at the higher elevation. We have 2 spacious group sites for tents. 

RV sites are located a short distance just up the hill. You can reserve a site at beginning February 7, 2018.  RV sites are sold out for this event, but you can check on their site for last minute cancellations.

There are several hikes nearby: Sylvia Wash, Morton’s Mill and Mastadon Peak are easy to moderate and close by; or the longer Lost Palms Oasis: Map click here. Also travel into the main part of the park to Hidden Valley, Keys View, Skull Rock. Tour WWII desert training camp and General Patton Museum and dine at the historic Eagle Café. Black Eagle 4WD road to Kaiser Mine. 

Prices: Prices are based upon you being a GO paid member.  If not currently a GO member, you will have the option of joining at an additional $25 per person for a one (1) year club membership prior to registration. Each person going must complete a separate registration. You can click here to join. If you are a member of another GO Chapter, please contact Ed Emond click here in order to be added to this system (for free). 

For further information or questions, contact Trip Leader: John Niedzwiedz: Email click here 

Schedule of Events

Thursday, April 26

  • Noon or earlier if sites are open - Check-in and register
  • 4:00 pm - Sunset hike Cottonwood Spring, Morton's Mill *
  • 6:00 pm - Tea Time meet and greet BYOB. Dinner on your own
  • 7:00 pm - Group campfire activities 

Friday, April 27

  • 9:00 am - Hike A: Hidden Valley/ Keys View   Easy 2 miles
  • 9:00 am - Hike B: Ruby Lee Mill Moderate 6 miles
  • 3:00 pm - Hike: Mastodon Pear  Moderate 3 miles
  • 6:00 pm - Potluck (bring a dish to share)
  • 7:00 pm - Group Campfire (bring firewood)

Saturday, April 28

  • 9:30 am - Hike: Hayfield Canyon Moderate 4.5 miles *
  • 7:00 pm - Group Campfire

Sunday, April 29

  •  9:00 am Hike*: Johns Camp Moderate 4.5 miles
  • 12:00 pm Check out

*Check campground white board for updates and hike/outing details.

Amenities: Restrooms with flush toilets (no showers); shade Ramada’s, picnic tables, fire rings, water and paved parking. No cell service or WiFi. 

RV sites: Fresh water is available at the nearby dump station, no hookups. RV sites are a short walk to our group tent site. See RV note below for further information. RV participants must book their own site.

What to Bring: Camp chair, camping/cooking gear, food, warm/cool weather clothing, potluck item, two bundles of firewood and the Ten Essentials. Pets welcomed. Park use fee $25 or bring you entry pass. 

DirectionsI-10 east to Cottonwood Spring Exit 168.  Go north 8 miles to campground. GPS coordinates: 33° 44.650' -115° 48.848'. Google Map Directions - Click Here

Climate: Day: 70s-80s & mild at night: 60s-50s.

Payments:  Although a PayPal screen will appear requesting payment via PayPal, you can scroll down on that screen and pay with a credit card without needing a PayPal account.

RefundsCancellation for a refund minus service fee of $5.00 must be received by April 19, 2018.  Contact the Trip Leader to cancel.

Pets: Pets must remain on a leash at all times. Leashes may be no longer than 6 feet (1.8 m).  Pets may go no more than 100 feet (30.5 m) from any road, picnic area, or campground. Owners must pick up any droppings. Leave no trace. Pets are not permitted on trails or in the backcountry.

Photos: To see some photos from prior trips   Album-1  Album-2  Album-3

Campground Map and NPS website Click Here

RV Camping:  RV sites: RV participants must book their own site.  Sites can be booked in advance at  Sites can accommodate an overall combined RV length (including a towed vehicle) of up to 35 feet. A few sites can accommodate longer RVs. These are sites 1A, 3A, 5A, 9A, 11A, 13A, 15A, 17A, 19A, 21A, 23A, 25A, 27A, 29A, 31A, 1B, 3B, 5B, 7B, 11B, 15B, 17B, 21B, 23B, 27B, 29B, and 31B. Campground Map.  Generator use is permitted only from 7-9 am, noon-2 pm, and 5-7 pm. 

Health Problems/allergies: It is the responsibility of participants to carry on their person a record of significant allergies, medications and medical history in the event of a medical emergency.  Discuss any medical concerns with the trip/ hike leader if you wish.

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Great Outdoors is a not for profit, all-volunteer LGBT organization (IRS 501(c)7 non-profit) dedicated to the enjoyment of outdoor recreation 
Our mailing address is:  Great Outdoors PS, P.O. Box 361, Palm Springs, CA 92263-0361 
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