Monday, November 13, 2006

November 06 06 Death Valley 49er’s Days

We left Boulder City after meeting with a man @ 7:30 am who sells kayaks. Bob ordered a new kayak. I sold mine today and he will get his new one for Xmas. I will get his old one. We headed to Pahrump and along the way met Carolyn a friend of mine who caravanned with us. We stopped briefly at Pahrump for some items at Wal-Mart, a tour of the SKP park there and lunch at the Golden Nugget Casino. We arrived at the Death Valley campground just at dusk to find the place packed. Carolyn found a place to park with our singles group but there was no where for our rig. I took off in the car to scout the NO generator area way up on a hill and surprise it was mostly empty. I went down and got Bob and we ended up camping up there. It is beautiful, peaceful and we sat out in the moonlight and the music from way below reached us. What a way to end the day. Bob was amazed at Death Valley. Not at all what he expected. Hills, water and trees were not in his thoughts. We came in on a road that had been closed when I was here in 2004 and I too was taken by the beauty of it.

Tuesday we met with our singles group, oriented ourselves to where everything, then Bob worked on the computer problem most of the day. In the evening we went to a pot luck dinner with the singles then down to listen to music.
Wednesday we caravanned all day to Titus Canyon with 32 other vehicles. We rode with Ed Ditmar our SI host. Carolyn was with us also. Ed has a 4 wheel Tracker and altho the views were great it was one very long and VERY DUSTY trip.
No windows or air conditioning and the dust kicked up by the vehicles in front was horrendous. We all had to stay close to the vehicle in front of us as the guide was narrating the trip with CB’s and in order for the 32 vehicle to hear we had to stay in a compact group. On arrival back home we immediately changed into our bathing suits and headed to the pool for a shower and swim. Social hour with the SI’s, ranger program on the storms of 2004 ended the evening. We were too tired to go hear the musical program but parts of it were heard way up on our hill campground.

Thursday Bob and I went out on our own. First to Ubehebe Crateor, a volcano and then to
Scottie’s Castle where we took both the house tour and the underground tour (the inner workings). Both were very interesting.
Then on to Stovepipe Wells for a musical show with a fantastic singer/yodeler who even could sound like a trumpet blowing out of the side of his mouth. We had dinner there at the Toll Road House restaurant. Back at Furnace Creek we went to another ranger program on rains in Death Valley. Busy day.

Friday was another spectular day for us.. We started out with breakfast “hootenanny” with the 49er’s along with some good singing and jokes. We then went to Zebriski Point for a great view of pretty color formations.
We watched a man reading his kite to fly a camera. Then we went on a ranger guided hike for 2 miles into a box canyon that ended at a natural bridge. We then drove to Dante’s View for a spectular view of the entire Death Valley. Overlooking the salt flats where there was a lake when I was here 2 years ago. Back to Furnace Creek just in time to see the Trail Rider’s arrive. After an Indian Taco at the Indian Village we then drove to Badwater, the lowest part of Death Valley. -282 ft. below sea level. On the way back to Furnace Creek we took the Artist’s Drive and arrived at the perfect light time for a shot of Artist’s Palette. What luck because just 5 minutes later the colors weren’t as pretty. The rest of the drive was so pretty too that we are going to have to do it again, next time.