Wall Street Mill Trail

A walk for history enthusiasts, with relics of mining, ranching, and a Wild West shootout.

Hiking Easy

Distance
3.7 km
Ascent
28 m
Descent
28 m
Duration
0-1 hrs
Low Point
1.3 km
High Point
1.3 km
Gradient
VIEW ON MAP
Wall Street Mill Trail Map

Description

The Wall Street Mill is a remnant of Joshua Tree’s mining boom, which happened before it became a national park. Miners brought ore from nearby mines to this mill for processing in hopes of a good yield. In addition to the mill, you’ll see relics of the ranching days, which predate the mining, and you'll also visit the solemn site of a deadly gun duel.

You can start the hike from either the Barker Dam trailhead (as mapped), or shave some distance by starting from the trailhead on a dirt road nearby, which is Queen Valley Road. The trail first meanders near the base of rock walls, among some tall Joshua trees. A side trail branches off toward the mouth of a canyon. Take that trail to find what’s left of Wonderland Ranch, established more than a century ago.

An old windmill stands beside the main trail, which then heads across more open ground. It actually follows the route of the road which led to the mill. Ownership of this land was once disputed by two local ranchers, and one killed the other in a gunfight. A crude monument erected by the trail now reads, “here is where Worth Bagley bit the dust at the hand of W.F.Keys. May 11, 1943.”

The path continues over flat ground but dips at one point into a wash. It soon comes to the remains of the mill, which date at least to the 1930s. Signs explain how the mill worked, and you can spot the bits of machinery that survive. The mill is rapidly deteriorating, however, and is fenced off for a reason. Do not enter any part of the dilapidated structure. You can spend more time exploring in the area, however, to find other relics of the mining and ranching days, or to scramble up on nearby rocks for a better view.

Sources: https://www.hikespeak.com/trails/wall-street-mill-joshua-tree/ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WallStreetMill

Difficulty

Easy

Walking along a well-kept trail that’s mostly flat. No obstacles are present.

Low Exposure

1 out of 4

The path is on completely flat land and potential injury is limited to falling over.

Remoteness

1 out of 4

Close to help in case of emergency.

Best time to visit

January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December

Features

  • Historical
  • Picturesque
  • Wild flowers
  • Family friendly

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area