The day was young and my visit to the Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes left me near the geographic center of Death Valley. I studied the map and decided my best use of time would be to drive to Panamint Springs on the far west side. This would take considerable time but would allow me to check out the supposed 4×4 only road to Darwin Falls and see if my rental car could pass.
As expected that side road was too uncertain for my 2wd rental. I kept driving west through the mountain pass and stopped at the Father Crowley Vista Point. A dirt road led from the main parking area out to a more open overlook but the road was too rugged for my car. I erred on the side of caution and hung back to enjoy the scenery.
I took a break from driving to plan my next move. Barely any cars passed this way and silence was abundant until….WHOOOOOSHHHHH! A fighter jet flying training runs instantly popped up from the canyon like it was teleported there. The jet engines shook everything for a few seconds before it vanished out of sight.
As I drove away from the vista point, more jets flew overhead. At times I was able to stop and snap a few photos. The limitations of my 18-55mm camera lens became apparent. I need to add something with more zoom to my kit when I get home.
No other cars in sight for miles. I stopped to get some photos across the valley between the mountains.
One more on the way back from Panamint Springs towards Stovepipe Wells. Time for a fuel break and to pick the next destination.Lat = 36.3518639 , Long = -117.5507355 -- Show at Google Maps