Three Southwestern Hikes to Test Your Senses

Joshua Tree, Zion, and the Guadalupe Mountains are three hike-worthy desert destinations.

Joshua Tree National Park, CA

See the vibrant Mojave black-collared lizard en route to 49 Palms Oasis. From CA 62, 4 miles west of Twentynine Palms, take Canyon Road soauth to 49 Palms Oasis trailhead. The trail reaches water shaded by fan palms in 1.5 miles. (760) 367-5500;

Guadalupe Mountains National Park, TX

Sniff the air around dry washes choked with prickly pear to find javelina herds. Drive 1.5 miles northeast from the visitor center on US 62; turn north at the Frijole Ranch trailhead. Hike the 2.3-mile Smith Spring loop through two oases. (915) 828-3251;

Zion National Park, UT

Hear the song of canyon wrens inside Lower Zion Canyon. From behind the Watchman Campground station, follow a service road 1/3 mile and then a path 175 yards east to the Watchman trailhead. Then hike 2 miles and ascend 370 feet to a rocky bench. (435) 772-3256;