Well, I did something that I usually don’t do last weekend. In view of the excitement regarding the first “Superbloom” in the park in the past 11 years, I dropped everything and came out for three full days of hiking and photographing wildflowers. And I must say, it was fantastic and completely worth it. The wildflowers were incredible all the way from the Owlsheads through the Funerals. On Friday, I spent the day hiking the Ibex Sand Dunes (Desert Sand Verbena and Desert Gold), Saratoga Spring (lots of wildflowers including Desert Five-Spot), and Tramway Canyon. Tramway Canyon is the canyon located at the southwestern corner of the Black Mountains and that was my Superbloom hike. The new main header on the front page gives you a glimpse of what the Tramway Canyon Superbloom hike was like, while the smaller secondary header shows you what the Ibex Dunes looked like. On Saturday, Charlie and I hiked a previously undocumented major canyon in the Funeral Mountains. That hike was interesting and it was also essentially a wildflower hike. Because US Mineral Monument 142 is above that canyon, it will be referred to as USMM 142 Canyon. On Sunday, I drove all the way to the end of Owlshead Mountains Road and hiked from the Microwave Tower to Owl BM, with incredible views of the Crystal Hills, Wingate Dry Lake, and Lost Lake. That hike was a personal favorite. To top everything off, my love for the Owlsheads was increased even more when I finally found my first live desert tortoise in Death Valley. That was truly a special moment. Now that I’m back home, there will be a number of updates coming in the near future. These include 5 new full reports and 1 updated report. Also, please note that I had to shift the location of the Black Mountains hikes box and the Owlshead Mountains hikes box on the main page, to allow for additional growth of more hikes in the Owlsheads. I have at least 4-6 more hikes planned for the Owlsheads, which are not all listed there at this time. Upcoming reports include:
- DV Wildlife and Wildflowers (updates will include photographs of the desert tortoise and a few select Superbloom photos)
- Ibex Sand Dunes (brand new report coming)
- Saratoga Spring (brand new report coming)
- Tramway Canyon Superbloom hike (new report coming)
- USMM 142 Canyon (Funeral Mountains undocumented major canyon new report coming)
- Owl BM (new report coming)
A beautiful view of the Crystal Hills and Epsom Salt Works as seen from Owl BM
View of the northern end of Lost Lake and Owlhead BM as seen from Owl BM
A desert tortoise in the Owlshead Mountains (more pictures to come soon)
Our final hiking report from our January 2016 trip to Death Valley has been released this morning. It is to a place informally known as Tafoni Canyon in the Saline Range. It was definitely a very enjoyable and interesting hike, despite being one of the hardest places in the park to drive to and start a hike. We hoped you enjoyed our series of 6 new reports and we look forward to publishing some more in the near future. On another note, we are hoping to travel to Maui soon to carry out a couple of hikes. And later in the summer, we are planning to carry out some hikes in French Polynesia (Tahiti, Moorea, Bora Bora, Maupiti, and possibly Huahine). The Tafoni Canyon report is currently listed as #93 on the main page.
Tafoni Canyon (South Fork) –
Tonight we finished up editing and have released our brand new report on Chalk Canyon in Saline Valley. As far as hikes go in Death Valley, the starting point for this hike is definitely one of the hardest to get to. It took us a combined driving time of 4 1/2 hours from Furnace Creek to reach the parking area. But anyway, I’m sure you’ll enjoy the report and glimpse into this area which has never before been documented in a detailed report form. After this, we have one more report to come from our January 2016 trip to Death Valley and then we will patiently await our next trip. The new report is currently listed as #94 on the main page.
Chalk Canyon –
Well, it has been two weeks since I published my last report. Hopefully, everyone enjoyed those two reports on the Smoke Tree Slots. Today, I am releasing my report on a place in the Panamint Mountains that we call Nemo Slot. It was quite a special hike as it continued our exploration of the forgotten canyons located between Nemo Canyon and Nova Canyon. As you will see, the secrets which continue to be revealed within this area continue to impress. There are at least 1-2 more additional hikes that I would like to carry out in this interesting area some day. The new report for Nemo Slot is currently listed as report #38 on the main page.
Nemo Slot –