Denise Goldberg's blog

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Choosing the scenic route

I chose the shortest route when I drove into the park on Sunday morning. My plans were to reverse that route today, but then I saw a sheet in the visitor center that listed 4 different routes back to Las Vegas - shortest, easiest, ghost town, and most scenic. It didn't take me too long to decide to take the route labeled "most scenic".

I headed south, taking Badwater Road to its endpoint where it met CA-127. The route continued on CA-127 and then onto the Old Spanish Trail. The piece of the route on Old Spanish Trail was 41 miles long - I didn't see another vehicle until the last 5 miles. It was desolate but beautiful.

The scenery changed as I crossed two mountain passes in the Amargosa Range, Jubilee Pass and Salsberry Pass.

It was a drive when I wished for a camera mounted on the car. I could easily have spent more time stopping than driving if I had attempted to document my drive with photos; for the most part the images are only in my mind.

My rental car has a GPS in it so I entered my end point before I started driving, selecting the option to stay off of highways. The GPS's route and the route I intended to follow were slightly different. It had me taking route CA-178 (and then NV-372) to meet up with NV-160 in Pahrump. It was quite unhappy when I continued on CA-127, heading for the Old Spanish Trail. Silly GPS kept telling me to turn around a block, finally suggesting that I find a safe spot to make a U-turn. It wasn't until a few more miles down the road when it decided that taking the Old Spanish Trail would work. Silly computer!

Tomorrow I plan to head to the east, destination Valley of Fire State Park.