Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Critters, Craters, and Ghost Towns...Day Two in Death Valley.

After spending our first night in the 
luxurious accommodations at Stovepipe Wells,
we headed back out to the sand dunes.
We'd read that if you visit them early in the morning
you can often find tracks left by various critters overnight.

We found tracks all over the place!
Mainly leading in and out of the bushes.
It was cool to see that life really does exist in the barren landscape.

We took a few more pictures of the dunes,
and my baby bump shadow,
before heading out on the road.

Our next stop was the Ubehebe Crater,
a volcanic crater formed between 2,000-7,000 years ago.
The road leading up to the crater
made us feel like we were on the moon.

The crater itself is about a half mile wide and over 770 feet deep.

The crater walls reminded me of the Grand Canyon. 

You would think some things are self explanatory.

Next up was Scotty's Castle,
literally a large castle built in the middle of nowhere.
It was built in the 1920's and was used as a vacation home 
for a wealthy midwesterner.

This was probably my least favorite part of the trip.
I thought the whole thing was ugly and boring.

Our next stop was much more interesting.

After the castle, we drove out to Beatty, NV
where right outside of town is a ghost town called Rhyolite.

It was started as a mining town in 1905
but by 1920, the ore had been exhausted, 
the stock market crashed, 
and the population dropped to zero.
All that's left now are a bunch of building ruins
and a creepy wind blowing through town.

On the road leading into Rhyolite,
there's a "museum" of sorts full of very eerie statues.

There's the Last Supper...

 A ghost riding a bicycle...

A nude lego lady...

And a cowboy with a penguin...

These strange sculptures definitely added to the creepy factor
of the ghost town in the middle of nowhere.
It kinda felt like we were part of some strange dream
or horror movie.

After Rhyolite, we headed back into the park
to see a few more sights before calling it a day.

There was Zabriske's Point...

Dante's Peak at 5,000 feet above the salt flats down below...

And finally, our hotel at Furnace Creek Ranch...

This was another long day full of driving,
but also full of so many interesting sights.
I was very happy to spend the night in a real bed
before heading out for our final day in the park
and a long drive home.

If you've stuck with me this far, hang in there...
our last day brings the lowest point in North America,
salt formations, natural bridge, and a coyote!

1 comment:

  1. What a unique experience. I'm not going to lie some of the pictures are really creepy, but very interesting. I am so glad you shared these! xo