Back from Death Valley, the final chapter

Good news, this is the last post of Death Valley National Park. Bad news, this is the last post of Death Valley National Park! It was so pretty, unusual and amazing there, I wish I had more to show you. But then, you may have seen enough. We are so fortunate to have spectacular National Parks here in the U.S. And seven or more are right here in California.

Today I’m showing you scenes from the Artist Drive, another drive through canyon, and Natural Bridge Canyon, a short hike to an amazing natural rock bridge. I will admit that I almost didn’t walk it because of the cold and bad back I was suffering from, but I was glad I did.

If you have a chance, visit Death Valley. Just don’t go in the summer when temperatures are HOT!

Back from Death Valley and drying up, part 6

It’s partly cloudy today, and it’s nice to go to the store without getting rained on. I know we should feel blessed to finally have rain, but a break is nice. More is due next week. Southern California is digging out from mud slides, and I’m hoping the families whose homes are near the summer’s King Fire are doing okay.

We’re almost done with Death Valley. Today I’m going to show you images from Twenty Mule Team Canyon and of Tom. I was walking Gem in the morning and saw Tom sitting on a table engrossed in what I thought was a music sheet and playing his guitar. His feet were propped up on an orange 5 gallon pail. I told Gem that we had to rush back to our trailer to get the camera. Yes, I do talk to the dog, and yes, he does try to understand. We did get back to Tom. I took some candid shots before he noticed me. Then we talked as I shot more. It was great to meet and talk with him.

After that we left for our drive/hike tour of our last day. Tom hikes the back country and avoids the “tourist areas.” I guess we’re tourists! Our luck had changed because they just opened the Twenty Mule Team Canyon that morning. It’s a drive through canyon, although you could stop and hike, and just beautiful.

See for yourself!

Back from Death Valley, part 5

I just don’t understand WordPress and their new setup. This is going to be a short post since it’s the second time doing it. I wrote and added pictures and accidentally published without adding tags and categories. In the old setup, you could edit the published post and update it. I did find where I could revert to a draft, pressed the button, and lost the entire post!

Enough grumbling. Death Valley is so diverse geologically that you could never be bored. Even though we couldn’t do major hiking and some trails were closed, we did get a good sense of this beautiful park. Today I have shots of Ubehebe Crater, The Sand Dunes and Mosaic Canyon. Our favorite was Mosaic Canyon and most of the images are of it. Explanations of the areas are in the captions.

Back from Death Valley with more to show you, part 4

You may have heard in the news that after a 3-year drought, California is experiencing a severe wind and rain storm. With that being a prominent concern, we dead headed from Death Valley and drove 11 hours to home yesterday to avoid getting caught in 60 mph winds that hit last night.

But, I still have so much more to show you. Death Valley is full of surprises and one of them is Scotty’s Castle. It’s called Scotty’s Castle because Scotty was the person most associated with the vacation home of millionaires Albert and Bessie Johnson. Scotty and Albert’s relationship was born out of a swindle (on Scotty’s part) and went on to become a friendship that would last Albert’s lifetime. People came from all over to meet Scotty and hear his tall tales. The Johnsons rented rooms and had private guests. The tour guide told us that when friends came, Bessie would play their favorite song from the clock tower as they were approaching. More of the history can be found at the two links I’ve provided.

My next post will show you the Devils Corn Field, Sand Dunes and Mosaic Canyon.

Now for the Castle images.

Not so sick any more in Death Valley, part 3

Yes, not so sick, but recuperating. The cold is almost gone—no tissues used today and my back is allowing me to move more easily. I hope my chiropractor, Dr. Heather Rosenberg, is home from Russia when we return.

Today we jammed in three sights that I will show you in another post. Today’s post is all about the highest and lowest places, Badwater Basin, in Death Valley. This is such an amazing place. In the summer, temperatures can reach 130 degrees Fahrenheit. During this winter trip, the temperatures are in the low 70s, and it is just beautiful.

One disappointment: they advertise Death Valley as one of the darkest places and welcome astronomers to view the stars. However, since we’ve been here, there has been a cloud cover. It’s great for photography, but not for Richard who brought his telescope!

Tomorrow we start the trek home. By the time we get there, I’ll be ready for more photography meetups.

Now, for the high, Dante’s View, and low, Badwater Basin, of the trip.

On the road again: Sick in Death Valley, California, part 2

Yes, still sick. Yesterday was a bust. I slept through the morning and two guys slept through the afternoon. So we stayed put. I can’t say I feel a whole lot better, but at least I’m walking upright!

To make up for our day off, we’re having a full day. I figure I can sleep in the truck if I need to! Oh, we have a camp mascot—a coyote. He roams around the campground. Hopefully, I’ll get a shot of him before we leave. Of course we’re very careful with our dog.

Today, I’m going to show you the Borax Museum. The Borax Company’s history is rich in this area as a mining company. Our Ranger guide at the Inn told us that Borax wanted to have this area designated as a National Park and did whatever they could to make it happen. In 1933, Death Valley was designated as a National Monument and became a National Park in 1994.Borax is still mining here.

The museum is a small structure and has artifacts from the old mining era. However, outside, I found my own gold mine—a bunch of old rusted mining equipment.

That equipment can’t be brought back to life, but I hope I don’t feel old and rusted for too much longer!

On the road again: Sick in Death Valley National Park, California

I didn’t plan on it, but it happened anyway. I left home with a bad back, hoping it would get better. While here I caught a cold from my dear friend Sandy. And, she really didn’t want to give it away. All of us four adults seem to be suffering from cold in some way.

So, we have taken it easy, avoiding strenuous hikes. Our first outing was to the Furnace Creek Inn and the Borax Museum. The Lodge is rather posh. We’re not staying there, but are camping in the National Park campground down the road. Here are some images from the lodge. Tomorrow (maybe depending on how I feel) the museum

It’s a bummer being sick when you want to see the sights and shoot pictures.