Death Valley

We took a trip to Death Valley National Park last weekend.  We packed up the car and headed north on 395 on Friday evening to Ridgecrest, spent the night there, and then headed to Death Valley by way of Trona on Saturday morning. Before reaching the park, we took a little side trip to see the Trona Pinnacles, some very cool rock formations. It was well worth the 7 mile dirt road each way. Plus, it was a good breakfast stop for Evan.

We arrived in Death Valley by afternoon…starving…and checked into our modest room at Stovepipe Wells Village. Unfortunately, the restaurant was closed, so we chowed on some crackers and then an ice cream bar from the market. After getting settled, we made the 30 min drive to Furnace Creek Ranch to get some grub.  Next, we headed to Badwater Basin (the lowest elevation in the US, 282 feet below sea level), followed by Devil’s Golf Course. We then did Artist’s Drive and fed Evan dinner while watching sunset from the car.

On Sunday, we headed out early for a hike through Mosaic Canyon, which was one of the highlights of our trip. It was a relatively easy hike through the canyon narrows. We saw amazing rock formations, lizards, as well as many wildflowers. Evan had a blast riding on Daddy’s back and also eating breakfast on a rock deep in the canyon. He also enjoyed shouting loudly and listening to his echo….as did Daddy. :o)  Evan was so tired that he zonked out in his pack on the return trip.

We then made our way back to Stovepipe Wells for a bit of lunch at the restaurant.  After a short rest, we drove up to Dante’s View, about 5000′ above sea level, and directly above Badwater Basin.  We enjoyed an amazing view of the salt flats of Death Valley, as well as the surrounding peaks. Mommy carried an umbrella to try to shade Evan from the sun, despite slathering him with sunblock, since she is totally paranoid about him getting burned.  On the drive back down, we made several stops to photograph the wildflowers that sprinkled the landscape.  They were yellow, orange, red, purple, and white.

After grabbing a pizza from the saloon at Furnace Creek, we headed to Zabriskie point to enjoy the sunset, which was amazing. Evan loved walking around at the point, with the help of Mom and Dad, and had dinner at the point just after sunset. At this time, we were all pretty tuckered out, and headed back to get some sleep.  Evan slept in the car on the way back, and woke up when we arrived at the motel. Mommy and Daddy took him on a walk with Tink under the stars. The warm air and crisp sky in the desert at night is amazing.  The stars and moon were absolutely brilliant.

On Monday, we woke up early to venture to the Mesquite Dunes. Despite the near sweltering heat at 8am, we decided to hike out to the ridges of the dunes.  We didn’t make it as far as we would have liked, but enjoyed the view. We headed back to the motel to pack up and head home. Overall we had a great trip, and were very impressed with how our little man did. Mommy was very pleased that she successfully kept everyone from getting sunburned as well.

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Our Favorites [ The Journey ] [ Trona Pinnacles ]
[ Badwater Basin ] [ Artist's Drive ] [ Mosaic Canyon ]
[ Dante's View ] [ Zabriskie Point ] [ Sand Dunes ]

4 Responses to “Death Valley”

  1. Barbara says:

    Evan, I didn’t know that you could drive! It looks like you are having so much fun. I really love that spiky hairdo picture! Were you a little sweaty? You sure did see a lot of interesting geographic formations and beautiful flowers. Great pictures! Lots of love from Grandma Barby and Grandpa Bob

  2. Liz and Larry says:

    What a wonderful trip. Great pictures. You were really able to see alot during your trip. Evan looks great behind the wheel! Wait until he is 16. Super trip. Love, Grandma and Grandpa Hill

  3. Kristina says:

    amazing :)

  4. Ree says:

    What a wonderful pictoral journal! You went everywhere I did with Mom & Don so it’s like I was there again! When we went to Dante’s view, it was windy with snow on the ground the same day as 80 + degrees at bad water below. We hiked from Zabriski point down through the maize to the bottom. I have pictures of mom in the wavey canyon where you went too. It was a wonderful trip. I’m so glad you all enjoyed it so much! Evan’s going to be a hec of a hiker! Love, Ree