Cottonwood spring is located near the south entrance to Joshua Tree National Park. Desert fan palms grow around a small perennial spring. An abundance of mortar holes for grinding seeds and nuts indicate that Cuhuilla Indians lived around the springs in prehistoric times. During the late 19th Century the spring was a popular stop along the route between the town of Mecca in the Coachella Valley and the Dale Mining District in the eastern Pinto Mountains. Today it is the location of the trailhead to the Lost Palms Oasis and is a short distance from the Cottonwood Visitor Center and Campground.