California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures - 57

FURNACE CREEK

DANTE'S VIEW,
DEATH VALLEY

TRONA PINNACLES

RED ROCK CANYON
STATE PARK

CENTRAL CALIFORNIA ROAD TRIP

VASQUEZ ROCKS
NATURAL AREA PARK

LOS ANGELES

From Salt Creek, it's another 16 miles until you arrive at the Oasis
at Death Valley. In the resort's more casual Ranch at Death Valley,

PHOTOGRAPH: (RED ROCK CANYON STATE PARK) LAURIN RINDER, (ZABRISKIE POINT) ARMIN ADAMS

enjoy baby-back ribs in a prickly pear barbecue sauce at the Last
Kind Words Saloon. Although only open since 2018, thanks to the
many authentic artifacts, the restaurant re-creates the atmosphere
of a classic Old West saloon. Down the road, the luxurious Inn
at Death Valley, which debuted in 1927, recently underwent a
major renovation and offers such pleasures as a spring-fed pool
that perpetually remains in the high-80s-perfect for the valley's
surprisingly chilly winter nights.
Wake up early for a day of exploration that hits many park
highlights. Less than 10 minutes from the inn, you won't want to
miss sunrise from Zabriskie Point, which looks out over badlands
that brighten to gold with the first light of day as the Panamint
Ranch glows pink in the distance. A few minutes to the south,

ZA B R I SKI E POI N T

follow the 2.5-mile backroad that explores the badlands of Twenty
Mule Team Canyon, where scenes from Star Wars Episode VI:
Return of the Jedi were filmed.
The unpaved, one-way road rejoins Highway 190 as it continues
to a turnoff for Dante's View. This is a longer detour-about 16 miles

lowest point in North America at 282 feet below sea level, where a
boardwalk leads out onto the valley's salt flats.
Work your way back up Badwater Road for short hikes that

round-trip-but at an elevation of 5,475 feet, Dante's View delivers

include the one-mile round-trip to the rock span at Natural Bridge

the quintessential Death Valley panorama as you look down on salt

and the three-mile up-and-back hike through Golden Canyon to

flats more than a mile below.
While there's a way to loop around from Highway 190 and

the remarkable formations at Red Cathedral. But there's no better
end to the day than following one-way, nine-mile Artists Drive as it

join Badwater Road in Death Valley, you'll actually save time by

meanders through badlands to Artists Palette. With colorful rock

backtracking. So return north on Highway 190. Then at the resort,

ranging from green to red to violet, Artists Palette spectacularly

drive south on Badwater Road, continuing past the craggy mineral

proves that despite its name, Death Valley is anything but a drab

formations of the Devil's Golf Course to Badwater Basin, the

and lifeless place.

57



California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures

Contents
California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures - Cover1
California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures - Cover2
California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures - 1
California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures - Contents
California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures - 3
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