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best route from los angeles

Los Angeles
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6 posts
2 reviews
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best route from los angeles

We are driving from los angeles to Death valley with a trailer next weekend, January 18th. I would appreciate recommendations on whether we should drive 15 through Baker to 127 or up the 395 to 190. We have a 24 ft trailer attached to a Yukon. We have camping reservations at Furnace Creek. Thanks in advance for advice.

Topanga, California
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1,769 posts
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1. Re: best route from los angeles

Half-dozen of one, six of the other, I think.

I suggest you go in one way and out the other!

Salt Lake City, Utah
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642 posts
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2. Re: best route from los angeles

ditto, except I would recommend coming in on 395 and going out the south end (past Badwater and old mills), through Shoshone and into Baker.

Sunrise at Zabriske Point is a must do as is a photo walk with Bob Greenberg if one is scheduled. If Dale is giving a program, he is one of the best interpretive rangers the park system has. He's retiring at the end of the season. My daughters' favorite hike is at Artist's Pallette on Artist Drive. That and around the rim at Ubehebe Crater.

Bring a coat. We were there just before New Years and the temp went down to 24!

Coyotes are roaming the campground. If you are taking a pet, make sure it doesn't get out of the trailer unless on a leash with someone holding the other end.

San Francisco
Destination Expert
for Death Valley Junction, Death Valley National Park
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3. Re: best route from los angeles

To see the most, I would also suggest taking different ways in and out.

The 190 route has some steep grades, after you pass Owens Lake and the 136 junction. Towne's Pass is the summit, at just under 5,000'. Then it's downhill the rest of the way, literally.

I-15 to Baker, it is less steep but has less spectacular scenery. From 127, you can then enter the park from Shoshone and Jubilee Pass, or go up to Death Valley Junction. And here's what happens next: If you take Jubilee Pass, you pass Badwater, Artist's Drive, Devil's Golf Course, and Golden Canyon, all prime visitor spots--but you'd have the trailer. If you come in from DVJ, you pass Dante's View Point road and Zabriskie Point--but you'd have the trailer. For a couple of these, the parking areas are pretty tight. Vehicles or combinations over 25' are forbidden on Artist's Drive and the last ¼ mile of Dante's View Road. So you'd have to go on to Furnace Creek to unhitch, and double back for much of the sightseeing.

Entering on 190, you can still see the Sand Dunes and Devil's Cornfield because there's parking on the paved shoulders. Then you get to Furnace Creek and drop the trailer before going to the other sites.

4. Re: best route from los angeles

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