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  1. Default Lake Tahoe to Death Valley

    Hi - very short notice as a last minute trip, in short driving down the 395 from Lake Tahoe to stay either in Lone Pine or ideally in DV itself (probably Stovepipe wells) and just want to enjoy the drive.

    What would every suggest we see on the way down? I think ideally i'd like to get to Panamint to see the sunset - unless there is a better side / view for that?

    Thanks so much!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Info We Don't Have?

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    I'm always curious when I see someone state that they are going to do something for a particular purpose and that doesn't at first blush make sense to me. So I'd really like to know why you thing Panamint (Springs, right?) would be a good place to watch the sunset from. Believe it or not, we often learn as much from people asking questions as we do from our own RFoadTrips. In this case, when I look at the terrain around Panamint Springs, I see a string of high mountains to the west of the town which itself sits in a deep valley. To me that says bad place to see a sunset, because in my experience the best sunsets have been when the sun gets very low on the horizon rather than disappearing behind an obstruction. If I were looking for a good place to view the sunset, I'd probably hang out at the spot where I first get down onto the Death Valley floor, at the junction of CA-190 and North Road. That would give me the longest, flattest sight line to the west-northwest in between the Panamint Range and Cottonwood Mountains. But, as I say, I'd really like to hear what your thinking was behind choosing Panamint Springs.

    As far as things to stop and see on the drive down, those would certainly include (depending on your interests) Mono Lake, Laws Railroad Museum outside Bishop, and/or Scotty's Castle if you arrive in Death Valley early enough.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia


    When I drove down 395 for the first time, I stopped at everything along the way which looked interesting to me.... and there was lots. Also made sure I was not going too fast so that I could actually stop.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.


    Mono lake, June Lakes loop road, Mammoth scenic loop and the Alabama Hills just off the Whitney portal road out of Lone pine are a few of the options i woud suggest.

  5. Default

    Thanks for the tips guys. Awesome.

    @AZBuck the panamint springs sunset was purely from a few posts I read on this forum before posting this thread. Happy to take any advice, we just love sunsets so where is best along that route? (also is there a good website to work out the timings of sun down in that area?)

    Our only certain for this leg is leaving Lake Tahoe after breakfast on a Sunday and dinner in DV in the evening - so just wanted to time whatever was best along the way.

    We have explored DV in 2010 - but more the east side / badwater road loops / Furnance Creek so first time taking time to come in from the West but wanted to balance time of seeing things on the way down to what we will see coming into DV. Also will check out the Sand Dunes to the north of Stovepipe wells as we leave for LV the following day as read on here thats worth it?

    Lastly - does anyone know the time difference between the Beatty route to LV and the Pahrump route. Clearly the later is more scenic however I wondered the difference real time? (as we've been the scenic route before if its hours longer we may just get to Vegas via Beatty if its loads quicker)

    Lastly - thats said is red rock canyon worth a loop?

    Sorry for rushed questions, all a very last minute trip.

  6. Default

    Hi guys, just to update that we made the trip. Tahoe was great, we went up into Squaw Valley for an event and views were great. Eagle ROck at the lake is worth the walk up (10 minutes) also. On the drive we stopped at the Bode ghoast town which was really interesting and worth a stop! The June Lake loop was awesome. We had a wild drive into Death Valley in the end, all small roads shut due to flash flooding and the main road from Panamint was covered in boulders and gravel - we only just made it through! But a great trip. Also the Beatty road out to Vegas was the only opton but its such a fast road - dual lane most of the way now. We swung out into red rock canyon later which was cool - however I think Death Valley in good weather beats it - but RR is a great quick option out of VEgas. Thanks for the help - Love america.

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