Located about seven miles west of the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve, Arthur B. Ripley Desert Woodland State Park preserves and protects an impressive stand of native Joshua trees and junipers, both of which grew in great abundance throughout the valley. The land was donated to the state by Arthur “Archie” Ripley in 1988.
Only a few stands of the majestic woodland community remain as most of the area has been cleared for housing, farming, and green energy. This pet-friendly park offers various facilities to visitors, both with and without dogs. The Arthur B. Ripley Desert Woodland State Park has a picnic table under a shade ramada that provides sun and wind protection.
There are two flat, easy nature trails with self-guided brochures which you and your pooch can easily navigate. The Ripley Nature Trail is a quarter of a mile and starts at the end of the picnic area. The Rare Juniper Trail, on the other hand, is just under a mile and begins about 100 yards up the Ripley Nature Trail.
There is an outhouse available but do keep in mind that there is no drinking water available, so remember to bring a fully-filled water jug for you and your pooch so stay hydrated all throughout your stay. Although this park has always been overshadowed by the nearby Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve, it provides two features that its more famous does not have, free parking and dog friendliness.
Bring your dog scooper bags so you can clean up after Spike. Watch out for rattlesnakes as they are common in the area. One of the things you and your pup will appreciate about the park is lack of crowds. There's nothing better than to have the park almost to yourself, away from, the hustle and bustle of people. At the northern end of the Arthur B. Ripley Desert Woodland State Park is an impressive grove of Joshua trees with some over twenty feet high.