Full photo journal at: http://rhhall.smugmug.com/gallery/2570765/1/
Dawn of March 9, 2007 was a cold and dreary morning. I've packed the bike and go to meet some friends at the office, where we'll begin our caravan to Death Valley. Temperatures in the low 40's keep my Gerbings on, along with the other heated amenities of the K-GT.
Our outbound route takes us through some very rough parts of western Nevada, including the bomb storage town of Hawthorne.
The roads are mostly straight, with unbelievably long sightlines, little traffic, and few places for a car-sized object to hide. What would you do with the throttle on your bike?
Rural Nevada economy is dominated by mining and ranching. We pass several operating ranches. I wonder how many heads are raised here each year?
We continue through Tonopah and Beatty, to visit our first point of interest: the ghost town of Rhyolite.
With a dawn ride to Dante's View planned, we head into Furnace Creek and set-up camp. The next morning we head up to Dante's View, over a mile above the valley floor.
Zabriskie's Point is also spectacular in the morning:
Later that day, we head to Badwater Basin, lowest point in the valley:
Followed by a trip through the canyons of Artist's Palette.
Temperatures are well into the 90's as I return to camp for lunch. After resting, I head up towards Scotty's Castle and volcanic Uhebe Crater.
The next day I head back home, via Highway 395. I'm packed and depart the campground by 9:15am.
Returning the road goes over several passes at 8,000 feet, snow still hugging the shoulders of the road. It's a completely spectacular ride along the eastern edge of the High Sierras, but I'm cold as I have left my Gerbings and my liner in the hardcase.
About 1:00pm, I stop in Bridgeport for a burger at one of my favorite places: Rhino's Bar and Grille:
With gorgeous white-capped mountains backdropped by a perfect blue sky, my camera decides that it's out of battery, so I am forced to enjoy the views knowing I won't be able to share them.