Hike the Indian Canyons
A few minutes drive from the center of Palm Springs on South Palm Canyon Drive will bring you to land belonging to the Agua Caliente tribe of Cahuilla Indians and the breathtaking natural beauty that has remained untouched for centuries.
There are four different canyons to venture so you may want to make a whole weekend out of exploring!
Palm Canyon is fifteen miles long and is one of the areas of great beauty in Western North America. Its indigenous flora and fauna, which the Cahuilla people so expertly used and its abundant Washingtonia filifera (California Fan Palm) are breathtaking contrasts to the stark rocky gorges and barren desert lands beyond. A moderately graded, paved foot path winds down into the canyon for picnicking near the stream, meditating, exploring, hiking or horseback riding. While in Palm Canyon visit the Trading Post for hiking maps, refreshments, Indian art and artifacts, books, jewelry, pottery, baskets, weaving, and conversational cultural lore.
Andreas Canyon has contrasting greens of the magnificent fan palms and more than 150 species of plants within a half-mile radius beckon the desert-weary traveler to this lush oasis. A scenic foot trail leads through the canyon passing groves of stately skirted palms, unusual rock formations and the perennial Andreas Creek. One can still see bedrock mortars and metates used centuries ago for preparing food. This tranquil setting is excellent for photography, bird-watching, or a picnic at one of the tables along the trail.
Murray Canyon is an easy hike south from Andreas Canyon. Foot and equestrian trails lead to beautiful recreational areas among the many palm trees. Lucky visitors may catch a glimpse of the Peninsula Big Horn Sheep (an endangered species), mule deer or other wild animals still roaming the high ground above the canyon. Less visited, Murray Canyon has its own secluded beauty. The endangered Least Bells Vireo bird is known to nest here.
Tahquitz Canyon is a two mile loop trail which leads to Tahquitz Falls and back. From the Visitor Center to the falls you will be gaining 350 feet in elevation. The trail is steep and rocky with many rock steps to climb. You must have good balance and be able to climb up and down rock steps that may be as high as 12 – 15 inches.
Check website for admission and more info