About Mojave Preserve
Wide and desolate expanses of creosote-filled valleys, Joshua Tree forests, lava fields and sand dunes comprise the scenery at Mojave National Preserve in California. Mountains in the preserve reach to 7,929 feet and are often snow-capped in winter, but the valleys are very arid and subject to extreme summertime temperatures. With just 540,000 visitors in a year (as of 2007), solitude and serenity abound.
While the Mojave Preserve isn't a National Park, it is a unit of the National Park System. It was established on October 31, 1994 and covers 1,531,832 acres between interstates 40 and 15 in southern California. Travelers along both routes see large areas of the preserve from the freeway.
Abandoned remnants of human settlement, including railroad and mining towns attest to the severity of the climate. Plant and animal life adapt to the climate, including the deep-rooted creosote bush and the Desert Tortoise, which can survive for months on its internal water storage.