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Lone Pine across Death Valley to LV

Amsterdam, The...
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3 posts
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Lone Pine across Death Valley to LV

End of March we would like to cross the DV starting from Lone Pine. We will have a regular rental car. Would it be possible to see some of the DV highlights like Dante's view, Zabriski point and Badwater without going off of paved roads (so not violating the rules of the rental companies). If we start at 9 am could we reach LV before dark?

thanks a lot,

a family from Amsterdam

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San Francisco
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for Death Valley Junction, Death Valley National Park
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1. Re: Lone Pine across Death Valley to LV

A regular car will be fine. Some of the roads to major sights in Death Valley are graded gravel or hard dirt. They are not paved but are maintained often and are fine for any car driven carefully unless there has been very wet weather. These include Mosaic Canyon, Salt Creek, Mustard Canyon, Devil's Golf Course, and 20 Mule Team Canyon. The rental car contracts generally refer to unimproved or undeveloped backcountry roads, or driving off roads entirely; these park roads do not fit that description.

You will have time to see many of the sights before dark, although you won't be able to go everywhere and see everything in one day.

You may have a chance to see wildflowers, although we are having a very dry winter in California. The crop may not be as spectacular is it is in a wetter year, but there could still be some. One of the topics in the "Top Questions" corner is about seeing wildflowers. Also, Salt Creek is the habitat of the Death Valley pupfish, which are dormant now but become active in spring when there is water in the creek. This would be an exciting sight to see.

Be sure to go to the visitor center to see the park movie and exhibits, since you won't have a lot of time to see everything. You'll get a good grasp of how all these unique natural wonders came to be in this one area. Not too many places in the world have these extreme high and low elevations, variety of vegetation, and geological diversity so closely clustered.

From Furnace Creek, where the visitor center is, go down Badwater Road first, to see Devil's Golf Course, Badwater, Artist's Drive, and Golden Canyon. The most efficient way to see them is in the order listed. You'll be going south and then back north, to continue east on Hwy 190 for Zabriskie Point, 20 Mule Team Canyon, and Dante's View.

I'm sure Tet, who is in the Netherlands and loves Death Valley, will come and offer some ideas.

P.S. I'm glad you are staying over in Lone Pine. It is a charming town with plenty to see and do.

2. Re: Lone Pine across Death Valley to LV

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