I shot these pics late last year while taking a very wide detour between LA and Las Vegas to attend SEMA for Nissan Sport Magazine. I had to hold them back until now, waiting for my editor to finally decide which ones he wanted to use in the Winter 2007
issue of the magazine. The magazine is in subscriber's mailboxes now, and is also available at your local Borders/Barnes&Noble/Hastings
store, check it out.
First up, driving into DV from the South East, from the direction of China Lake NAS
A couple general cool pics of DV from the Aguereberry Point area:
That night I decided to drive the famous Titus Canyon road at night, a one way dirt trail down a wash that at points is so narrow I could reach out the windows on either side and touch sheer rock walls hundreds of feet tall.
This is a pic looking across DV at the dunes at Stovepipe Wells. My kids and I climbed these dunes two years ago
. They are big, but nothing compared to what I was looking for on this day...
First off you drive WAY north up Big Pine Road, which looking South in this picture is that wee thread of dirt leading off into the horizon:
Then you get to Crankshaft Crossing and turn West onto Hanging Rock Canyon road:
Along the way there's lots to explore:
And then at last you drive down Eureka Valley to the Eureka Dunes
, easily the tallest dunes in California and around the tallest in North America, roughly 700 feet tall:
Around that time some Canadian flyboys visiting China Lake decided to buzz me:
This dune complex is massive in every way, but I tanked up with a lot of water, packed a lot more, plus an MRE
and my Nikon (who's CCD needs cleaning, yes I noticed!
) and started climbing. Here's various pics from the way up:
The view looking South from the southern summit:
The opposite view looking north, the Pathfinder is behind the dune marked with the carrot:
Various cool dune shots:
The view from the Northern peak towards the parking area, the Pathfinder is right at the tip of the carrot:
The view from the Northern peak looking south along the ridge (I climbed the further Southern peak first because I could do it gradually, trying to climb directly up the Northern peak would be a colossal PITA):
The hike down was a LOT more fun and relaxing, so I snapped a couple more interesting shots:
I then drove North through Eureka Valley, East through the Sylvania Mountains where I snapped this shot of the Pathfinder posing with some Joshua Trees, finally finding pavement again on 266 and then to 95 where I drove south directly to Las Vegas. Damn fun little detour!