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What to Wear in Joshua Tree

Posted by Roam Often on
Desert Getaway - What to Wear in Joshua Tree

From the gorgeous desert rocks to the namesake Joshua trees, there’s a lot to see in Joshua Tree National Park. 

Once you’ve planned your day hikes and Instagram spots, there’s only one thing left to do before your trip: figure out what to wear!

Read on for our top tips for what to wear in Joshua Tree, and follow our Pinterest board for more outfit ideas.

1. Check the weather.

This desert destination feels radically different depending on the time of year you’re going, so check the weather before you go. In the peak of summer, you can expect temps upwards of 100°F, while the winter can cool down to an average 50°F. 

Joshua Tree is most comfortable during the spring (March to May) and the fall (October to November).

Girl Traveling in Joshua Tree, CA

2. Pack your favorite pair of hiking shoes. 

A trip to Joshua Tree is all about trekking trails and exploring the great outdoors. You’ll want a solid pair of supportive hiking shoes. If you plan on doing any climbing, bring a separate pair of climbing shoes, too.

Traveling to Joshua Tree in the summer? Show off your pedicure in a pair of hiking sandals. They’re just as supportive as shoes, but more lightweight — and they’ll save you the embarrassment of stinky feet when you get back to the Airbnb.

3. Think cargo, but keep it cute. 

Don’t let the word cargo throw you off — plenty of cargo shorts and bottoms for women are now made from fabrics that are just as flexible, but more fitted and flattering. 

Cargo shorts are ideal for summer and spring trips, while in the winter you’ll want a pair of cargo pants. For ultimate flexibility, get a pair of pants where you can roll up the bottoms or zip them off entirely. 

If you’re visiting in the fall or winter, consider packing a pair of leggings to wear underneath. 

You may want to pack some yoga pants as well. They’re perfect for hikes and hanging at the campground or your hotel. (Speaking of which, if you’re planning on camping in Joshua Tree, pack some thermal PJs for a fall or winter trip, and a breathable pajama set for summer trips.)

4. Athletic tops are your friend.

They can be long-sleeved or short-sleeved, as long as they cover your shoulders from the sun. The desert sun is no joke, so resist the temptation to bare your shoulders. You can even find athletic tops that offer UPF sun protection on Amazon and sporting goods stores.

Pack a waterproof jacket, too. They’re great for cool-weather hikes, and for when it gets windy around the campfire. 

5. Splurge on socks.

A weekend in Joshua Tree calls for serious socks. Look for ones made from merino wool to wick away moisture and prevent blisters. Your feet will thank you!

6. Don’t forget your accessories.

No Joshua Tree outfit is complete without a sun hat and sunglasses. Wide brim hats keep you cool and comfortable. We love ones with a drawstring, so you can toss it back when you’re posing for that Instagram pic.

A blanket scarf is another smart option. You can layer it on when you’re going for a sunset hike or toasting s’mores, and use it as an extra blanket while you sleep. 

You’ll also need a backpack to carry your essentials. In case you’re wondering, that includes:

  • Bug spray
  • Sunscreen
  • Flashlight
  • Phone
  • Camera
  • Sun gaiter or handkerchief
  • Binoculars
  • First aid kit
  • Compass
  • Snacks
  • Small trash bag
  • Toilet paper (you know why)
  • Hydroflask

REI has some great options for hiking backpacks that come in fun colors, but don’t skimp on the functional. Some even include a built-in hydration pack. You can also bring along a waist belt bag for short hikes. 

7. See the sights in style.

Don’t let the National Park have all the fun. Steal yourself away to explore Pioneertown and snap some selfies in front of all the amazing art installations you’ll find around town. Joshua Tree has a rocker, hippie vibe to it so show off your hipster style. Here are some outfit ideas:

  • Wear your favorite boho dress, or pair a cute summer dress with a denim jacket.
  • Bust out your cutoff denim shorts. Wear them with a vintage tee and a distressed jacket.
  • Rock some statement pants, whether they’re a pair of colorful corduroys or snake print leggings. 

Ready to complete the look? Bring your ankle boots, sunglasses, and a hip hat. You’ll fit in like a local, but stand out for your style. Add some flair with a kerchief — go on, we dare ya!

There you have it: everything you need for a fabulous adventure in Joshua Tree, whether you’re taking in the desert sites or enjoying a sound bath at the Integratron. Is your luggage short on space? Check out our guide to packing everything.  

And if you love the vibes in Joshua Tree and want more travel inspiration, we’ve got lists of the can’t-miss national parks and road trip destinations on the West Coast.

Roam often, stay stylish.

Girl Traveling in Joshua Tree, CA

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