WENDING YOUR WAY... through Death Valley National Park? You might pass through Panamint Springs, or Furnace Creek, or behold Badwater Basin, an epic expanse that is truly one of those amazing, experience-it-in-person kind of places. You might delight in Dante's View, or take in Zabriskie Point, or find your way to one of the destination's beautiful canyons. But to get to all of these spots? You need roads, those ribbons of drive-ready asphalt that can lead you to your desert adventures. Many roads throughout the Eastern California expanse shuttered in response to the coronavirus, but reopenings have begun in earnest. And as of June 26, "all park roads" are again in business, or starting to be, as is...
FURNACE CREEK VISITOR CENTER, or rather a temporary bookstore at the center. The reopening is part of the multi-phased reopening at the park, one that has been rolling out as summer grew closer and began. "Entrance fees are required" when visiting Death Valley, and there are some other things to know. Like? "Please note that given the distances involved, it might take a few days for staff to fully open all gates and remove all barricades as we work to open a park larger than the state of Connecticut! Driving around gates or barricades is strictly prohibited and enforced, but you may walk into those areas," says a social media post. So as June winds down, be a bit patient as roads reopen. This park is massive.
BEST CHECK IN... with the official NPS site for Death Valley before making for the desert, and keep in mind that the world-famous hot spot has entered triple-digit days, temperature-wise, so do plan accordingly and safely. As always, read all COVID-19 travel advisories before setting out for wide open spaces, colorful sunsets, and more than a little space to yourself.
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