I love Death Valley. It’s surreal, dramatic, stark, and beautiful. I knew from the outset of our ride it was a “must see” location and it was a great way to finish a great ride. If you’ve never made the trek to Death Valley, you need to. It’s magnificent.
We had an easy (but cold) run south from Tonopah to Beatty, but by the time we made Beatty it was already heating up. We stopped as soon as we entered Death Valley to “delayer” the heated vests, the motorcycle pants, the extra sweatshirts, and all of the heavy-duty-keep-the-cold-out clothing we had put on earlier in Tonopah. It was quite a day…from a little above freezing in Tonopah to about 95 degrees in Death Valley. Death Valley is the hottest place on the planet.
The scenery in Death Valley is beyond stunning. We picked a good time to visit. It was not too hot (it has reached over 130 degrees there) and we saw several other riders doing the same thing we were doing…taking in the views and enjoying one of the most unique places on the planet.
I had initially planned to make just two stops in Death Valley (Artist’s Palette and Badwater), but Dan suggested we include Zabriskie Point and Dante’s Peak. I’m sure glad he said that. I’ve been to Death Valley several times but I had never stopped at either of the places Dan suggested. They were great suggestions, and they were the high points of the ride for me. Both spots are awesome.
I’ve mentioned earlier that Orlando and Velma rode two up on our ride. Orlando and Vilma own several Harleys and now, an RX3. They love the RX3 and had no problem keeping up with the group. Surprisingly, their RX3 returned the same fuel economy as the other bikes.
After our stop at Dante’s Peak, we were off to Zabriskie Point. The scenes from the road and the riding were great.
Dan previously rode with us on two of the Baja rides. I joke around with Dan a lot, telling him that he’s our male model…
Zabriskie Point was another amazing spot. It involved a short hike up a nearly-vertical hill, but the scenes were worth the trek up.
After visiting Zabriskie Point, we were off to Artist’s Palette.
Here’s a cool shot of two of the fastest RX3s at Artist’s Palette. The hills have different mineral contents, which makes the area look like, well, an artist’s palette…
I was wearing my Nikon around my neck. I like getting these kinds of “from the saddle” photos. This one is on the way out of Artist’s Palette.
Badwater was only a few miles further down the road from Artist’s Palette. Check this out…
We rode south out of Death Valley at the end of our day to spend the night in Shoshone, and it was grand. The ride was desolate and beautiful, and the Shoshone Inn was fun. They had an outdoor fireplace in the courtyard, and we all sat around it telling stories and jokes. This was our last night on the road, and it was a great way to wrap up a great trip. We walked across the street to the only restaurant in town, and it, too, was great.
Folks, that about wraps it up. We had breakfast the following morning at the Mad Greek in Baker, California, and then rode the last hundred miles back to the CSC plant. The ride overall was about 1600 miles and we didn’t have a lick of trouble with any of the bikes.
I sure love doing these rides. There’s going to be a story about this one in Motorcycle.com (that’s one of the reasons Joe Gresh rode with us), so keep an eye on that great publication. You might think about joining us on the next CSC adventure ride. All you need is a CSC motorcycle and you can be part of the fun. Like we always say…come ride with us!