Traveling To Death Valley Through Trona

I have three options of routes to take when going to Death Valley from my home.  First, I always head up 14 from L.A. to Mojave.  From there, I can either go east on the 58 to Barstow, where I hook into the I15 to Baker, and from there to 127 and then 190.   Or, I keep going north up 14 to 395 and catch the west end of 190 out of Olancha to take “the long way” in to Death Valley.  This is the way I usually go because I don’t like the I15.  People don’t drive nicely on the I15 between Los Angeles to Las Vegas.  They’re all in a hurry to gamble and cutting in and out of traffic while driving 90 mph is the modus operandi. I don’t like it.   Plus, it’s prettier going into Death Valley from the west end.  The fun option, though, is to go through the Panamint Valley via Trona.

Trona is fantastic.  It’s like something out of a novel.  The mineral plant looms over the small town and valley, going day and night, with beige and rust-colored trains stretched out across the valley, smelly steam coming out of stacks and stark vistas that look like they’ve been colorized from a black and white photo.  There’s an epic story that is hiding just under the surface of Trona.

6 thoughts on “Traveling To Death Valley Through Trona

  1. I first met Death Valley last year, driving out of Las Vegas after a visit there. We stayed in Parumph, the night before. I’m looking forward to going back and finding little towns like Trona. Thanks for this info.

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    • Trona is not really a place one would stay, as there isn’t really any lodging. It’s a very interesting place to see, though. As far as places to stay, you can go to The Oasis (formerly Furnace Creek Ranch and the Inn) inside the park, but that’s very expensive. I rarely do that, although I just returned from nine days in DV – part of which was in Furnace Creek. Beatty, Nevada is a good place to explore and has several motels. It’s not far to drive to the park from there and Rhyolite ghost town is on the way. Very cool place. I usually stay in Tecopa where there are natural hot springs, down near the south end of the valley. Lots and lots of neat places to see in and around the DV area!

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  2. It’s nice that you can take pleasure in some industrial landscapes right alongside the natural ones. I like that train, nicely centered in the stark landscape.
    We have a refinery and a forest products (lumber) plant nearby. We admire them for the sheer size and the sense that a whole lot is going on there and you have no idea exactly what it is – but it must be interesting. 😉
    We take back roads coming home from a city 45 minutes away where I get PT – what a difference from the highway!

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