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Old 04-02-2014, 07:45 PM   #1
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Spots between Bishop and Valley of Fire?

I'm wondering if anybody has suggestions for boondocking stops between Bishop CA and Valley of Fire NV. My first thought is just a place to stay the night but if there is a nice place to visit perhaps longer. To me, nice is in nature with good photo and hiking opportunities. If there isn't much of along the way then maybe a night at a Wal-Mart.

I'm attaching a map which is the route initially suggested by the Good Sam trip planning tool, but I'm by no means married to that route.
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Old 04-03-2014, 07:08 AM   #2
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Greetings! Not sure when you plan to go or how long you have, but I would like to suggest an alternate route that contains some of our favorite places. If you continue down 395 to Lone Pine, you could check out Alabama Hills right there at Lone Pine and boondock there - fantastic place. There is also a nice full hookup park at the south end of Lone Pine if you decide to hook up for a day or so. From there I would suggest heading over into Death Valley, if you will be going before it gets too hot. There are a variety of parks with services ranging from no hookups to full. Furnace Creek and Stovepipe Wells are the places to check out for that, and the sights and walking opportunities at DV are endless. Here are a couple of links to Alabama Hills and Mt. Whitney at our blog, if you're interested. You can also search for blogs we did on Death Valley if you decide to take that route. You can easily head into Nevada from Death Valley to reach your destination. Good luck!

The other Alabama… | The Lowe's RV adventures

Discovering majestic Mt. Whitney – She’s a beauty! | The Lowe's RV adventures
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Old 04-03-2014, 08:28 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by sdlowe11 View Post
Greetings! Not sure when you plan to go or how long you have, but I would like to suggest an alternate route that contains some of our favorite places. If you continue down 395 to Lone Pine, you could check out Alabama Hills right there at Lone Pine and boondock there - fantastic place. There is also a nice full hookup park at the south end of Lone Pine if you decide to hook up for a day or so. From there I would suggest heading over into Death Valley, if you will be going before it gets too hot. There are a variety of parks with services ranging from no hookups to full. Furnace Creek and Stovepipe Wells are the places to check out for that, and the sights and walking opportunities at DV are endless. Here are a couple of links to Alabama Hills and Mt. Whitney at our blog, if you're interested. You can also search for blogs we did on Death Valley if you decide to take that route. You can easily head into Nevada from Death Valley to reach your destination. Good luck! The other Alabama… | The Lowe's RV adventures Discovering majestic Mt. Whitney – She’s a beauty! | The Lowe's RV adventures
Great suggestions. Thanks!

I have been to Alabama Hills and Death Valley, but I do believe I would like to revisit Alabama Hills and camp there. Previously, as I recall (it's been a very long time so my recollection is dim). When in the Alabama Hills previously it would have been as a brief visit during the day. I would like to spend more time there and look for some photo opportunities.

As to death Valley, I have spent quite a bit of time there. The last time was after the wettest winter on record and at the peak of the flower bloom. I expected to stay maybe three days but couldn't tear myself away for eight!

I should have mentioned that I plan to travel about the beginning of this coming May if I can get ready in time. I should also have mentioned my rig is 33 feet when you include the motorcycle I carry on back.

Thanks again.
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Old 04-03-2014, 08:45 AM   #4
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You need to know that the road over the White Mountains between Big Pine and Nevada becomes VERY narrow and twisty in several places.

Although a scenic trip, and the oldest trees in the world - Bristlecone Pine -are found near the top, I wouldn't take a large/long vehicle through this pass. Meeting oncoming traffic could be a bit "exciting" - it's a single lane road in several places - and you could end up dragging the back of the coach/trailer on the ground due to the narrow, twisty passages through some rock formations.

There's no WalMart along the route over the mountains, and even fewer camping spots. Once in Nevada, the road opens up, and you'll find several places to camp on the road toward Las Vegas.

I used to live in Bishop, worked at the Cal Tech Radio Observatory at the base of the pass, and have traveled it many times.
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Old 04-03-2014, 08:54 AM   #5
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You need to know that the road over the White Mountains between Big Pine and Nevada becomes VERY narrow and twisty in several places.

Although a scenic trip, and the oldest trees in the world - Bristlecone Pine -are found near the top, I wouldn't take a large/long vehicle through this pass. Meeting oncoming traffic could be a bit "exciting", and you could end up dragging the back of the coach/trailer on the ground due to the narrow, twisty passages through some rock formations.

I used to live in Bishop, worked at the Cal Tech Radio Observatory at the base of the pass, and have traveled it many times.
Good advice. Thanks. I'll have to look at that on the map.

I have been to the bristlecone pines a couple of times and enjoyed photographing them. I remember that my car barely made it to the top where the Patriarch grove is. I would never attempt that trip in a motorhome, although I'm not sure that's the same road to which you refer. As I said I will need to check the map. Maybe I'll make a day trip up there again on my motorcycle and re-photograph the trees, now with digital instead of film. I'm really glad you reminded me of them.

I recall car camping at the Grandview campground and remember it as possibly being the quietest place I have ever been. I remember the sound of a fly buzzing around as being the only sound I could hear and that it seemed incredibly loud.
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Old 04-03-2014, 09:03 AM   #6
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The day trip to see the Bristlecone Pines would be a fun thing to do, especially on your motorcycle. We were there a year ago, and hiked to the top - wonderful experience, great scenery, and - as you said - very, very quiet. Not sure if you can still see the southernmost glacier in the continental US on the Sierra Mountain side above Big Pine. It may have melted to the point it's not visible.

The road to the Bristlecone Pines is pretty twisty, but the road I'm speaking of is the main route across the White Mountains from Big Pine to Nevada. I'd opt for the motorcycle trip, and, if you believe then you can make it in the RV, go for it. Either route is a nice one, but the Lone Pine/Alabama Hills route is far easier. Once you depart the Bristlecone Pines, the road isn't as narrow or twisty - you'll have seen the worst at that point.
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Old 04-03-2014, 05:58 PM   #7
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That certainly is the fastest route. If you do have time consider RT 6, then take 376 to Arc Dome Wilderness area. Lots of ghost towns in the area as well. East to spend 2-3 days here.
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Old 04-04-2014, 07:50 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pagosajoe View Post
You need to know that the road over the White Mountains between Big Pine and Nevada becomes VERY narrow and twisty in several places.

Although a scenic trip, and the oldest trees in the world - Bristlecone Pine -are found near the top, I wouldn't take a large/long vehicle through this pass. Meeting oncoming traffic could be a bit "exciting" - it's a single lane road in several places - and you could end up dragging the back of the coach/trailer on the ground due to the narrow, twisty passages through some rock formations.

There's no WalMart along the route over the mountains, and even fewer camping spots. Once in Nevada, the road opens up, and you'll find several places to camp on the road toward Las Vegas.

I used to live in Bishop, worked at the Cal Tech Radio Observatory at the base of the pass, and have traveled it many times.
I believe the route we took from Lone Pine to Death Valley was via 136 out of Lone Pine, then 190 all the way to Stovepipe Wells. I also remember climbing up that mountain pass prior to Death Valley, and worse yet the descent on the other side, were extremely long and steep.

That trip up to the Bristlecone Pines would be fun on a motorcycle. I don't have a motorcycle, but I do wish I had taken my bicycle up there on the car and then coasted all the way back down. I'm going back someday just to do that!
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