Tag Archives: death valley

A Well Deserved Rest Stop

Rest Stop, Death Valley, California

Our journey to Death Valley began with a slight disaster. Having spent two days relaxing in Las Vegas we returned to our hire car ready to continue on into the desert. We were keen to get going as we had a packed schedule that would see us reach Lone Pine on the other side of Death Valley just before sun down. Having risen fairly early we were ready to hit the road. Unfortunately we were going nowhere fast. We were stuck in a Las Vegas car park with two large suitcases and one hire car with a dead battery.

Eventually, one repair truck and two hours later we made it to Las Vegas airport to pick up a second car. Our journey to the desert could finally begin! This shot was taken at the first rest stop we came upon after entering the national park. It was also our first opportunity to pay the park entrance fee, which was more luck than judgement.

There is obviously an implicit trust that people will pay the fee as the station was unmanned. I’m not sure there was anything stopping us driving onward to our first stop at Dante’s View without paying up. But we didn’t want to find out, so we persevered with the misbehaving ticket machine. After a few attempts it accepted one of our cards and we went on our merry way, the dead battery episode already a distant memory.

Have you ever had a mishap whilst travelling? Did it affect your plans? How did you deal with it? I’d love to hear from you!

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Dwarfed By The Desert In Death Valley

Road, Death Valley, USA

Driving through the desert in Death Valley is one of my top travel experiences to date. The lonely, vast and desolate landscape serves only to teach us how insignificant our place in the world is. I know many people love beach destinations as a place to go and be still, to think and reflect. But I think the desert provides a more than viable alternative.

I really like this shot, to me it shows the epic scale of the desert alongside humanity’s attempt to explore and conquer its barren land. This winding road that leads to Dante’s View is dwarfed by the landscape, and rightly so. That is exactly how we felt driving through Death Valley, dwarfed.

You may also notice that it’s actually quite a good quality road, which was a pleasant surprise. We were expecting some trouble on this leg of our journey but we need not have worried, the roads through Death Valley were some of the smoothest we experienced during our two weeks in California!

Do you prefer to visit the desert or the beach for your sandy needs? What’s the best road you’ve ever driven? Please get in touch!

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Feeling The Heat At Dante’s Viewpoint

Dante's View, Death Valley, California

Dante’s Viewpoint was our first stop on a day driving through the lowest and driest part of North America – Death Valley. Looking out over the salt flats of Badwater Basin we were really starting to feel the heat. Little did we know that when we reached the basin itself the temperature would rise to 117°F (47°C). That was certainly something we had never experienced before!

Unfortunately we had a fairly packed itinerary for the day, so didn’t spend as long as I would have liked at the viewpoint. I’m pretty sure it’s impossible to capture its grandeur in a photograph, but I gave it my best shot. I found it difficult to make the compromise between getting some good foreground interest and keeping enough of the basin itself in shot. I need to return with a wider lens!

Have you been to Dante’s Viewpoint? Driven through Death Valley? What’s the highest temperature you’ve ever experienced? I’d love to hear from you!

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