Upper Rattlesnake Canyon

5/5 (5 reviews)
Upper Rattlesnake Canyon seemed destined to be lost to time, reduced to just a story that you might hear when hanging out with the older offroaders. Now resurrected and open again, this trail is handily the hardest trail in the Big Bear Mountain Range with its legendary obstacles. The obstacles ar... Read More
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Highlights of Upper Rattlesnake Canyon

Altitude Category Icon Altitude
Camping Category Icon Camping
Desert Category Icon Desert
Forest Category Icon Forest
Ghost Town Category Icon Ghost Town
Iconic Category Icon Iconic
Mud Category Icon Mud
Rock Category Icon Rock
Sand Category Icon Sand
Scenic Category Icon Scenic
Snow Wheeling Category Icon Snow Wheeling
Wash Category Icon Wash
Water Category Icon Water
Highest Elevation
5768 ft
Shape of Trail
Out & Back
Typically Open
Year Round
Best Direction
South
Official Trail Name
Rattlesnake Canyon
Nearest Town
Landers
Nearest Services
Yucca Valley
Management Agency
Bureau Of Land Management
District
Barstow Field Office

Overview

Upper Rattlesnake Canyon seemed destined to be lost to time, reduced to just a story that you might hear when hanging out with the older offroaders. Now resurrected and open again, this trail is handily the hardest trail in the Big Bear Mountain Range with its legendary obstacles. The obstacles are so intense that many of the legendary Johnson Valley Trails pale in comparison and often brave drivers choose to simply turn around. Over the years the trail has been called many names from Pops Canyon, Grandparents Canyon, to even Garden of Eden as the different groups think they found something new and exciting. But understand, this trail has been here a long time and the original trail is still rather easy to follow. The history of this epic trail is this was once part of the original Rattlesnake Canyon. The upper part of the canyon made Rattlesnake Canyon get it's intermediate to hard rating. The 2 to 4-foot waterfall of bygone days is now a monster 25-foot waterfall and growing. Thus as the canyon gets harder and harder. Because of this, Rattlesnake Canyon trail has moved out of the canyon and now parallels this canyon in the Joshua Tree Forest leaving this trail to be forgotten over time. But Upper Rattlesnake Canyon is reborn. With lush green plants and trees and year-round flowing springs, it is easy to see why people think they found some kind of Garden of Eden. But understand, there is a lot of history to this uniquely intense rock crawling trail. There is no room for mistakes on this trail without severe consequences. All mistakes will result in vehicle damage ranging from body damage to breaking components or even worse. Thus the only people that should run a legendary trail like this are those who can respect such an insanely difficult 4x4 trail that only could exist from the histories of what once was. Are you that person?

Trail Difficulty and Assessment

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Trail Guide Overview
7 Waypoints
23 Trail Photos
9 Trail Concerns
5 Community Reviews
1 Video
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