Death Valley - January 2024

Yes, much thanks for that jump starter! And that's another great report.

I might as well add our exit story after the ski3pins left for home. Deb's feet were not healing as they usually do, and it rained steady for 70% of the day. It wasn't a hard rain, but we decided to work on projects inside our camper all day. We planned another 10-12 days exploring the Racetrack, Lippencott and Saline Valley areas. So we loaded 30 gal of water, gratefully took the ski3pins extra 3 gal of gas, and started down the Racetrack road.

At Teakettle Junction we turned SE to the base of Lost Burro Gap, where I wandered around looking for interesting terrain for about 90 minutes. I scouted some stuff to share with Deb on our next trip. Then we headed up into the Cottonwood Mountains to look for more interesting terrain, and found a nice camp. That afternoon I wandered for another hour while Deb rested her feet. The spot we chose was nearly level for a mile, with nice soft sand underfoot. So the next morning we repeated my route and found some petroglyphs.

But we checked the weather and got reports from the ski3pins and Adiona that an atmospheric river was coming into southern California. Weather in Death Valley wouldn't clear up for about 4-5 days. Our inReach reported that we might get a lot of rain per hour, the kind of rain that can wash out roads. So we decided to bail on the trip and go home. I suspect the rain didn't do a lot of damage. All backroads we drove in the park were in better than usual condition.

That evening we reached Bakersfield and intended to "camp out" in a motel for a couple of days to wait out the storm. But the weather didn't seem all that bad the next morning, so we headed northbound to Washington state. Although it rained much of the way, it wasn't bad and traffic was light. We managed to stay ahead of nasty weather somehow. Death Valley will wait until our April trip when Deb will be giving talks about the Death Valley '49ers in the Furnace Creek visitor center, Shoshone museum, and Santa Clarita where the Manly party reached safety. (Details: https://debfoxdesign.com/).
 
What a great trip! I love that you can basically find a hike just about anywhere in Death Valley. What a unique park. And... I'm getting excited for our own return to Death Valley while reading along!
 
Death Valley is probably one place I will not visit; far from Minnesota and a lot of interesting stuff in between.
Thanks for letting us come along vicariously.
 
Wandering Sagebrush said:
You had Late July Mexican Corn Chips and Prickly Pear salsa! I am jealous!

But I appreciate the opportunity to tag along vicariously! Thanks for sharing!
There is something about prickly pear salsa in a desert setting. It just feels like home. Mr. Sage, we're happy to help you get your boots dusty without leaving Fort Sagebrush. Thanks for the comment. :)
 
Casa Escarlata Robles Too said:
Thanks Monte after 40 visits you still have fantastic things to show and write about.
Don't stop visiting.
Frank

Casa Escarlata Robles Too said:
Those jump starters do come in handy.
Beautiful colors especially in the trees near the end of the story.
Thanks again for showing us all your great times.
Frank
Frank, as always, thanks for your kind comments! :)
 
rubberlegs said:
Yes, much thanks for that jump starter! And that's another great report.

I might as well add our exit story after the ski3pins left for home. Deb's feet were not healing as they usually do, and it rained steady for 70% of the day. It wasn't a hard rain, but we decided to work on projects inside our camper all day. We planned another 10-12 days exploring the Racetrack, Lippencott and Saline Valley areas. So we loaded 30 gal of water, gratefully took the ski3pins extra 3 gal of gas, and started down the Racetrack road.

At Teakettle Junction we turned SE to the base of Lost Burro Gap, where I wandered around looking for interesting terrain for about 90 minutes. I scouted some stuff to share with Deb on our next trip. Then we headed up into the Cottonwood Mountains to look for more interesting terrain, and found a nice camp. That afternoon I wandered for another hour while Deb rested her feet. The spot we chose was nearly level for a mile, with nice soft sand underfoot. So the next morning we repeated my route and found some petroglyphs.

But we checked the weather and got reports from the ski3pins and Adiona that an atmospheric river was coming into southern California. Weather in Death Valley wouldn't clear up for about 4-5 days. Our inReach reported that we might get a lot of rain per hour, the kind of rain that can wash out roads. So we decided to bail on the trip and go home. I suspect the rain didn't do a lot of damage. All backroads we drove in the park were in better than usual condition.

That evening we reached Bakersfield and intended to "camp out" in a motel for a couple of days to wait out the storm. But the weather didn't seem all that bad the next morning, so we headed northbound to Washington state. Although it rained much of the way, it wasn't bad and traffic was light. We managed to stay ahead of nasty weather somehow. Death Valley will wait until our April trip when Deb will be giving talks about the Death Valley '49ers in the Furnace Creek visitor center, Shoshone museum, and Santa Clarita where the Manly party reached safety. (Details: https://debfoxdesign.com/).
The rubberlegs duo, it was another great adventure meeting up with you two! Thank you. Extra gas and a jump starter, we'll always have those on hand for you. Too bad for all of us that the weather became a challenge and we're happy you two made it safe and sound back up to Washington. As I suspect you know, Julie and I have already made a return trip to Death Valley. But, that is something for another trip story.............. :)
 
Missing Link said:
As always, a wonderfully written and photographed trip report. Thanks very much to the four of you.
MIssing Link, thank you for your very kind comment. We appreciate it! :)
 
Occidental said:
What a great trip! I love that you can basically find a hike just about anywhere in Death Valley. What a unique park. And... I'm getting excited for our own return to Death Valley while reading along!
Occidental, thank you for the very nice comment. Yes, Death Valley is such a varied and spectacular landscape. Have a great trip! :)
 
JaSAn said:
Death Valley is probably one place I will not visit; far from Minnesota and a lot of interesting stuff in between.
Thanks for letting us come along vicariously.
You are most welcome and thanks for the comment! :)
 
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