The TD4WD Club had a wonderful trip to Death Valley with 11 Jeeps and 22 hardy souls. The early November weather was perfect for exploring. We arrived via Titus Canyon, a spectacular dirt road through a narrow slot canyon. There were challenging obstacles on the Echo Canyon Trail but everyone made it through with expert spotting from Don Gerbi. We saw the sunrise at Zabriskie Point and we walked at the lowest spot in the US, Bad Water. We descended the harrowing Lippincott Mine shelf road without incident. We visited Cottonwood Canyon and drove the deep sand. Seven of us drove out via Big Pine Road, another dirt trail on our way north. We went from an elevation of -250’ in Death Valley to over 10,000’ at the Ancient Bristlecone Forest in just a few hours – our Hydro Flask produced a geyser from the pressure built up due to the elevation gain! Tim West and we drove down to Bishop via the steepest gravel road I’ve ever experienced - Silver Canyon Road. We scoped out the Alabama Hills and Whitney Portal for next fall’s trip.
During the trip we imagined the hardships the gold seekers from 1849 had and why they came to call the region Death Valley – we had a very different experience. We found the scenery awe inspiring and the remnants of the old mines and ghost towns thought provoking – truly a grand adventure!