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DV in summer, August 2017

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2 years 6 months ago #919 by CandaceS
CandaceS replied the topic: DV in summer, August 2017
I drove across DV in June of 2017, travelling from Las Vegas to California. Highest outside temperature reading according to my Jeep was 126F. I didn't stop anywhere in DV (I did make a quick restroom stop in Panamint Springs), so you are braver than me, LOL

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2 years 6 months ago - 2 years 6 months ago #918 by rva1945
rva1945 created the topic: DV in summer, August 2017
Hi, I'm a newcomer into this forum so I will post my trip report, though it was months ago.

We departed Mammoth Lakes, CA for a car ride to Las Vegas, with stops in Death Valley. The route was CA-395, 136, 190, 127, State Line road (CA-NV), and NV-160 to LV.

The trip took from 8am to 7pm.

It was hot hot hot. We had lunch at around 12pm at Furnace Creek, nice folks working there, everybody was nice and willing to help. Then we went to Badwater...hell on earth. Some people even walked on the salt far beyond the balcony. It felt like 50C (120F+) with all the heat from above, in the air, and from below. We spent a few minutes taking pictures until my wife started to feel uncomfortable. It was nice to have the umbrella in my backpack.

Do you use a hair dryer? Aim it into your face and imagine 100 hair driers blowing hot air to all your body at once.

Then we took Badwater rd back to Artist's Drive, a wonderful landscape of colors. It's a one way road and you can take it rom south to north only. After visiting the restrooms back at Furnace Creek, we drove to Zabriskie Point, and we fell in love with that place. Later, to Dante's View. It was 32C (86F) in Dante's View as it is 1700mts (around 5000ft) above sea level. The sight of the "purgatory" down there (the Valley with Badwater at the center) is hard to explain in words.

Then we called it a day in DV and sadly left the park bound to LV.

As for the 25$ fee, I tried to pay at Stovepipe Wells Rangers' Station but the kiosk doesn't read swipe cards (mine doesn't have the chip) so I paid at the Furnace Creek Visitors Center. The employees were nice people, they didn't hesitate to answer my (sometimes stupid) questions.

The rental car was a Ford Focus 2017, I used the downhill option in the stick for prolonged descents and some steep climbs: BE CAREFUL AND ALERT WHILE DRIVING INTO DANTE'S VIEW, PRINCIPALLY THE LAST MILE AS IT IS TOO STEEP AND HAS HAIRPIN TURNS. A crash might occur. Use lower gears. The same while descending.

Conclusion: even my wife fell in love with Death Valley and the sightings, however the extreme weather. We carried 3 1/2 gallons of water, some salty biscuits and some sweet bars. We didn't use all that water.

It would have been nice to go in Winter as we could walk further from the car at some landscapes but anyway it wasn't that bad. Be prepared, follow the advices and the only thing you will be worried about is the park's name, just that. Anyway you will be subjecting your body to an extreme condition, just don't do stupid things and you will be ok.

Please don't hesitate to ask me any question.

Regards,

Robert
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