Hot Spot

Joshua Tree National Park 2019

Twentynine Palms, CA

Joshua Tree National Park is the closest National Park to both San Diego and Los Angeles.  This close proximity to such major population centers brings with it extreme levels of visitation with varying levels of stewardship education as well as a diverse range of recreational interests.  Even with infrastructure in the park in place, the fragile desert ecosystem including vast amounts of living soil crust (also known as cryptobiotic soil) is being heavily degraded by unsustainable cross-country travel.   Other major impacts include illegal off-highway vehicle (OHV) travel, graffiti, and building of illegal structures within archaeological sites.

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