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Old 08-16-2013, 03:42 PM   #11
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Re: Death Valley roads and other areas trashed

You should cross-post about the CTUC maps; they're great. Up-to-date, which is important since all the closures that have been implemented have changed some routes marked on older maps. They are by offroaders for offroaders. BTW, the app PDF Maps by Avenza sells a couple of them geocoded for use on an iPhone (not sure about Android) but they don't have all areas. The Jawbone Station BLM visitor center had all of them when I was there; a great little bookstore even if you don't offroad.

If you go to the Death Valley road conditions page on facebook they have an awesome shot of the North Pass road washout going into Saline Valley; it's now a hillclimb. Must have been quite an event. They didn't commit to when it will be fixed.

Rob
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Old 08-16-2013, 04:26 PM   #12
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Re: Death Valley roads and other areas trashed

I wonder why the ICSD said they would ticket me if I went around the signs. Scare tactics?
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Old 08-16-2013, 06:55 PM   #13
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Re: Death Valley roads and other areas trashed

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Originally Posted by daveb
I wonder why the ICSD said they would ticket me if I went around the signs. Scare tactics?
We went up Death Valley Road out of Big Pine (towards North Pass). Big road closed sign in the middle of the road with plenty of room to go around. (ha ha) then came another advisory sign listing "road to Scotty's Castle Closed", "Road to Pahrump Closed", + about 4 other locations. We turned off at Papoose Flat Road (11 miles in) and thats were we found the Inyo County workers + a volunteer. The volunteer said he just took the road all the way to Scotty's Castle last week (after the storm) and had no problem. We didn't talk about North Pass or Saline Valley Rd. Once he said no problem to Papoose Flat I abandoned the backup plan of heading to Whippoorwill Canyon.

Scare tactics? probably. It is a dangerous place for the unprepared to travel in. I think its the County's way of liability containment. And if it scares off the novices, all the better.

BTW, this was my second trip up to Papoose Flat. That area is quickly becoming one of my favorites. Definitely going back. We spent 5 days on trails between Bridgeport and Lone Pine. The only time we saw "any" vehicles (on the trails) was up at Laurel Lakes.

Temps in the Owens Valley floor: 103 in Bishop, 98 in Lone Pine
Temps in the high country: Low 80's in the day, mid 60's at night.
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Old 08-16-2013, 08:47 PM   #14
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Re: Death Valley roads and other areas trashed

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[

Scare tactics? probably. It is a dangerous place for the unprepared to travel in. I think its the County's way of liability containment. And if it scares off the novices, all the better.
Figures. Not that I want to go now but this winter I'd like to do something challenging.
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Old 08-17-2013, 03:03 PM   #15
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Re: Death Valley roads and other areas trashed

How'd you get into Papoose flat? I looked at that from the Mazourka Pk road but it looked awful. But that was years ago. Looking for the easiest way in.

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Old 08-18-2013, 11:06 AM   #16
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Re: Death Valley roads and other areas trashed

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How'd you get into Papoose flat? I looked at that from the Mazourka Pk road but it looked awful. But that was years ago. Looking for the easiest way in.

Rob
The easiest way in is to approach from the North. Take 168 out of Big Pine to Death Valley Road (Waucoba Rd) The turnoff is 11.1 miles from the 168/DVR intersection. The volunteers were just putting up signs but incase they have not finished, in about 200 yards you come to a Y. The left goes to the Narrows, the right goes to Papoose Flat. There are other forks in the road but you can figure them out pretty easily. Other than a couple of switchbacks, the road is pretty tame.

Approaching it from the South (Mazourka Peak / Badger Flat) is a bit more challenging. Adventure Duo Dave did one of his great write ups last year.
http://www.adventureduo.com/2012/06/maz ... flats.html
Another description
http://www.sportsmobileforum.com/viewto ... 150#p43150


When we had the SMB, it handled the South to North loop without any problems although just above Papoose Flat (Heading south) there is a very steep grade and some tight chicanes through the pines. There are a lot of off camber turns on loose gravel that can cause problems if you are not observant. A few "pop overs" that are blind that will make you say "I hope there is a road over that".

The route is well documented in Back Country Adventures (High Sierra #46 - although its in the Inyos) and rated as a 4. Maybe add another difficulty half-point for the larger SMB vehicles. As long as you have high clearance and a high/low transfer case (keep it in low) nothing should stop you from taking this trail.
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