For some reason, I really felt drawn to the dry lake near the Silurian Hills, about 20 miles off I-15 and the town of Baker. I ended up staying one night with friends and then went back for two more nights on my own, bookending my stay in Death Valley with some way-off-the-grid boondocking.
On the weekends, I bet this dry lake is rocking with ATVs and trailers, at least judging from the tire tracks left in the dried mud. Both times I was here, it was me and 2-3 other rigs, each of us staking out a spot far away from each other. It was the complete opposite of the Furnace Creek campground at Death Valley, stuffed full of big boxy RVs with generators going from 7AM till 9PM.
This was the view out my door on the second stay. I did nothing but look at that till the darkness was complete and the only lights were the trucks on the highway picking their way through the passes to get to I-15.
The second day, I totally relaxed in the stillness and the silence, far enough away that the traffic on the access highway didn’t get to me. I saw a guy in an ATV at one point, but he was just going from somewhere to his rig off on my left, and other than casual wave, we didn’t exchange words and I’m pretty sure that was fine with both of us.
As the sun started to slide below the horizon, the Silurian Hills were a beautiful display of golden hour light and I couldn’t resist getting my Alto into the frame.
I almost missed sunrise the next morning, it was so quiet out there. No generators firing up at 7AM, yay! I did open the window blind long enough to see this version of the sun coming up and then promptly closed it and fell back asleep.
This last image is for everyone who thinks that desert means brown and dry. It does in the middle of August, but in January, with a bit of rain, life emerges and makes for a bit of greenery in the middle of all that dry lake dust.
I’m definitely keeping this spot on my list of favorite places. It’s easy to find, uncrowded, and the scenery is fantastic.
Silurian Hills (wikipedia)
Already, he was dreaming of a refined solitude, a comfortable desert, a motionless ark in which to seek refuge from the unending deluge of human stupidity.