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Death Valley National Park in California

Fast Facts

Location: Southern California Deser, USA. A small part extends to Nevada
Attraction Type: National Park
Significance: The largest national park in USA with all the striking geological features ruling in full glory.
Best Time to Visit: The winter and the early spring season are the best time to visit Death Valley. As, from November to March, the temparature of the place is likely to be slightly mild.
How to Reach: One can reach Death Valley National Park in various ways.
By Air: Take a flight to Las Vegas and from there go to the National Park.
By train: Barstow is the station in nearby proximity. The route followed is the Couthern Chief Chicago-Los Angeles.
By Road: The Park is accessible by various adventurous routes. If you are coming from the east, then it is better to take CA 190 lying west of the park and is about 20 miles into the park. From the west, take US 395 and then lead to CA 190 from Olancha. It stretch through Panamint Springs and run over Towne Pass. From Las Vegas in the north, take US 95 and proceed to Lathrop Wells. Then proceed south to NV 373 and it will be 23 miles to Death Valley Junction. The way will lead you through CA 190 and traversing 20 miles you will reach the entrance of the park. The route from the south is like this, Advance northwards on CA 127. Traveling 56 miles, you will reach the town of Shoshone. At a distance of one mile north of Shoshone, take a turn to CA 178 and it will lead you into the Park.
Nearest Airport: The McCarran International Airport, Las Vegas is the closest commercial airport to Death Valley. There are also two small airstrips in the park accessible by the private planes.

The Death Valley National Park in California is the largest National Park in USA spreading over a vast expanse of land of about 14,000 square kilometers. It happens to be a great destination for the ones, who are adventurous at heart. The vast landscape of the region offers a range of striking geological attributes and they will surely take one to an unknown world of mystery. The valley happens to be about 210 kilometers in length and the width varies from 10- 21 kilometers. The steep mountain ranges of Panamit, Black, Funeral, and Gravevine border it in the west and the east respectively. The Death Valley National Park is a place bearing marked wilderness set with the backdrop of a rich natural and cultural history. Therefore, it will indeed be a fascinating experience to explore through the various nooks and crannies of the bewitching address.

Climate of Death Valley National Park in California

The place can very well be referred as one of the hottest places around the globe. The temperature ranges to as high as 49 degree Celsius. The climate is also extremely dry. The summer months are marked by scorching heat and therefore it is difficult to bear it to some extent. Therefore, unless you are hardy enough to tolerate the adverse climate, it is not wise to undertake the Death Valley tour during summer. The months ranging from November through March are the mild ones and it is best to plan Death Valley trip during the winter and spring season.

Plants and animals in Death Valley National Park in California

Innumerable flora and fauna varieties are abundant in the Death Valley National Park. There is a myriad of bird, reptiles and mammal species. They all adapt well to the desert climate of the region. There are about 350 types of birds and the mammal, which is widely available here, is the big horn sheep. Most of the animals have nocturnal lifestyle. There are also some species of fishes available in the salt creek and the water bodies of permanent nature. The flora variety constitutes about 1000 species of flowers, which are largely indigenous to Death Valley.

Attractions in and around Death Valley National Park in California

There are countless sights of attractions dispersed throughout the Death Valley attractions. In general the sights can be classified into four areas, they are the Furnace Creek, Stovepipe Wells, Scotty’s Castle and Back country. These places act as the landmark to the major points of attractions scattered in proximity to them. Here is a zone wise overview of the important points.

Scotty’s Castle and Neighborhood: Scotty’s Castle: It is the fabled ranch famed after Walter Scott, an outrageous character with lots of diversities. There are several tales related to the castle and therefore it will be an interesting affair in true terms to take an extensive faced of the castle and discover its mysterious history. The Mediterranean — Spanish architecture of the installation also worth an esteemed appreciation.

Ubehebe Crater: It is a giant crater lying at the northern part of Death Valley and his formed by extensive volcanic activity.

Titus Canyon: It is a spectacular deep narrow canyon. One can reach it by taking the path starting from Beatty to wards the north into the Death Valley.

Death Valley and Furnace Creek: Salt Creek: It is a nice place lying at a distance of about two miles to the west of the main road. It was once a lake, now almost dried out to form a salty creek coming out of the desert continuing for hundred yards and getting lost in the sand.

Bad Water: It lies 282 feet below sea level and are the lowest point in the western Hemisphere.

Zabriskie point: A nice view point for photographers

Mustard Canyon: A popular hiking ground.

The other eminent locations are,

  • Visitor’s Center and Museum
  • Wild rose Charcoal Klins
  • Keane Wonder Mine
  • Natural Bridge
  • Mushroom Rock
  • Echo Canyon
  • Devil’s Cornfield
  • Devil’s Golf Course
  • Dante’s View
  • Artist Drive
  • Marble Canyon
  • Eureka Sand dunes
  • Barker Ranch
  • Ibex Dunes
  • Barker Ranch
  • Race track Playa
  • Tea kettle junction
  • Telescope Peak
The Ballaret, Chloride City, the Harrisburg, the Greenwater, the Leadfield, the Panamint city, the Rhyolite and the Skidoo are the towns dispersed at length of the Death Valley and all of them worth a visit.

Things to do in Death Valley National Park

The most exciting activities to be indulged in Death Valley National Park include Hiking, Photography, Four Wheel Driving, Bicycling, and Tour of Scotty’s Castle. The ultra Marathon in the Bad water happens to be the most adventurous act in Death Valley National Park.

Accommodation in Death Valley National Park

There are various lodgings available in the park. They are of different budget range and give one the opportunity to have a tranquil stay in the serene atmosphere of Death Valley National Park. Some of the well-known accommodations within the park are,

Furnace Creek Inn.

Furnace Creek Ranch.

Stovepipe Wells Village

Panamint Springs Resort

All of these accommodation options have their own dining facilities and they are all set amidst a charmingly elegant setting. One can savor through a range of delicacies and enjoy different drinks there.

There are also ample camping grounds in the Park. Some of them operate throughout the year and the others remain open either during summer or during winter season. The Furnace Creek, the Stove pipe well RV camp ground the Wild Rose and the Mesquite Spring operate round the year and the Sunset, the Texas Spring are open only during winter. Some of them are also open during summer and closed during winter.

Getting around Death Valley National Park

There is no public vehicle available in Death Valley National Park. Therefore it is better to take a rental car for exploring the region. It is very important to follow the speed limit while driving in order to prevent accidents.

Fees and Booking

A seven pass comprising unlimited re-entry is issued for $20 for a standard vehicle, such as, car, truck and van. The charge is $10 for individuals traveling on foot, motorcycle, or bicycle. The Annual pass costs $40. For commercial vehicle, the entry fees are according to the capacity of the vehicle. It is like this,

Vehicle capacity 1-6: $25, plus $10 per person
Vehicle capacity 7-15: $75
Vehicle capacity 16-25: $100
Vehicle capacity 26 or more: $200

Safety Rule in Death Valley National Park

  1. It is mandatory to drink lots of water, at least 4 liters every day. Salty food and sports drinks can also be taken.
  2. Never hike in the low elevation during summer.
  3. Always carry extra water for emergency. If the car seems to create problem, always be at the site of the break down and wait until help comes.
  4. Beware of animals, such as, Rattle Snake, Scorpions or Black widow Spiders. Never place hand or feet on place, which you can’t see properly.
  5. Be conscious about speed limit while driving.
  6. Never try to enter any mine, tunnel or shaft unguided.
  7. Don’t depend on the cell phone as it is not possible to connect to the network generally. Though on emergency, you can dial 911.

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