What did I learn from Death Valley?
As arduous as a whole day driving may be, an extreme change in environment at the end of the day softens the long day of travel. Death Valley’s season, climate, topography, density, and demographics are so different from San Francisco that every day away in the desert felt a week away. I would drive again so far to trek more lunar landscapes.
The nighttime desert is exceedingly quiet and dark. The rustle of potato chips and the clink of beer bottles echo across the parking lot. Coyotes yodele between the mountains. Car headlights blind pedestrians. On the lowest brightness setting, my computer still shines too intensely. The desert harkens back to an era when a single candle could illuminate a room.
I spent $270 on the trip, half of that cost was gas. I drank all twelve beers and only one third of the water. Next time, more beer and less water.
I should have brought better cigarette lighters for the stove, earplugs, and a backup air mattress.
I make good decisions. I can survive of my own.
I have visited all the national parks in California except one: Kings Canyon & Sequoia National Park. I would like to visit Sequoia in September for a similarly long three nights.