• Adventurous Photography Death Valley

Next Stop, Death Valley

There’s really nothing to say about Las Vegas and definitely nothing to show for it. We came, we saw, and we were well and truly conquered. There’s no question that we crammed a lot of fun in, but the desire to leave was unanimous after 3 nights.The next stop would be Death Valley National Park. It was really a midway point on the way to Huntington Beach but one we were eager to explore. Even coming from one of Earth’s largest desert islands (Australia), it promised to be an intriguingly alien landscape.

One of the first landmarks you encounter on this route is Zabriskie Point (above). It’s the most tourist-friendly spot in DVNP, with a road side lookout. Crowds might rob it of the silence afforded the remote Mesquite Sand Dunes but it doesn’t disappoint with an initial glimps of the valley, and Golden Canyon in particular.

We tried to get up early one morning to catch the sunrise at the Mesquite Sand Dunes. Sunrise and sunset are the best times to photograph the dunes as the shadows are most dramatic with the low sun. Even a couple of hours later things get pretty dull there. And hot. We didn’t really succeed, all being pretty terrible in the morning while on holiday. To make things worse it was overcast, and the diffuse light meant the dunes were evenly lit boring other than during a few periods that the sun broke through. We managed to get a few shots away before the eery silence of the dunes started to disappear with the arrival of a dust storm. This was a pretty typical moment among our adventures, in so far as had we ventured farther from the RV we’d have probably ended up lost in the dust storm and … err well we didn’t. Climbing to the highest spot we could find in Golden Canyon in 50 MPH wind gusts (and holding each other by the belt – see pic) being another misadventure.

Next Stop, Death ValleyBenjamin Hall