|At the entrance to salt mine. I did drive in, but |
my courage failed me about 1/4 mile into the mine and I backed out.
|Technically in Death Valley with Mt. Whitney, CA in B/G.|
There are a number of cabins in Death Valley that are first-come, first served, free to stay at. People and clubs 'adopt them'. Usually there is a sign-in book and an expectation that you will leave the cabin the same way that you found it. Boxcar Cabin is one of those.
I usually prefer to sleep in my truck rather than stay in a cabin when I'm out and exploring Death Valley. But sometimes I break my rule.
|Barker Ranch Cabin, used by Charles Manson and the Manson Family|
back when they were sacrificing young women and so forth. Not a cabin
you'd want to spend the night in. It's near Ballarat.
|I don't know the name of this cabin, but I spent the night here|
|Inside of the cabin. Note it has a new roll-out bed. I never use the|
cabin mattresses. Just put my sleeping pad and sleeping bag on the
springs. In this case, it worked out.
|Too "rustic" to overnight in if you can sleep in the rig.|
|Skull Rock - used by Indians as a holy place. It's well off the|
beaten path. Not often hiked to (if at all) by tourists.
|There is a lot of "desert art" in Death Valley and across the desert.|
Most of it is very interesting. People just put it up to be putting it up.
There is also tea kettle junction in Death Valley and the mail box on
the Mojave Road.
|It's more fun to explore when there is a group, but going it alone|
works as well. It depends on what you're looking for - or not
looking for. LL in this photo, acting as "guide".
If you're going to Death Valley, best that you go prepared. The area is HUGE and there are not that many opportunities to find fuel. I have the standard 19 gallon tank in the Toyota FJ, an additional 22 gallon auxiliary tank that I had fabricated custom for the rig, and an additional 5-10 gallons on the rear bumper.
(Right) You see my load-out in the back of the rig. I keep the ice chest, food, etc. in the back seat of the truck. You need water and you need canteens if you break down and need to walk out. A map, compass, handgun, MRE's and a sleeping bag should accompany you on your hike that could easily last more than one day. Distances in Death Valley are vast and it can get very cold there at night. Conversely it can get warm during the day.
There is Death Valley National Park (small) and Death Valley, which is several hundred miles long and a couple hundred miles wide and incorporates several mountain ranges. The one thing you learn about Death Valley by visiting is that there is a LOT of fresh, sweet water in Death Valley. It was that water that sustained a lot of mining ventures that took place there over 100 years.
If you ever plan to visit, you need to get a book on the history of Death Valley and a contemporary guide book so that you don't flail around and get lost. That happens. People still die in Death Valley.