Southeast of the turn-off for Badwater Basin is a turn for Dante's View. The drive to the viewpoint is about 13 miles down a curvy, skinny road with some steep grades, but it is well worth it. You will be over 5000 feet higher than Badwater Basin and you get a great view of the attractions along Badwater Road. If the weather is clear enough you can see Mount Whitney (14,494 feet) in the distance. This allows you to see the highest point and the lowest point in the lower 48 states from the same place.
Dante's View is a lookout spot on the eastern side of Death Valley where you can get a great view of the valley down below, and supposedly on clear days, you can see all the way to the Sierra Nevada mountains, and Mt. Whitney, thus seeing both the lowest and highest points in the lower 48. Unfortunately for us, our view was obscured by smoke drifting east from the massive wildfires in Southern California. We could still make out Telescope Peak on the other side of the valley, as well as see Badwater below us.
Nearly a mile above the Badwater salt flats is Dante's View. It was actually cooler up here. Felt like 80F ish compared to the scorching heat of the Badwater basin. It is worth the 13 mile drive. It ends with a curvy trip up to the top where there is a parking lot. A trailer drop off is on the way to the top. Approximately a 14 percent grade up the hill. At the top is some info plaques that you can read to find out how the area was formed.
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Death Valley is a fascinating geographical marvel. Because of the shift of land over millions of years, the Rocky's crashed into the Sierra Mountain range. To illustrate this, get three napkins. Place one flat in the center and slowly crumple them up. Notice how the center of the napkin will drop. This is conceptually how Death Valley was formed. As a result, there are many pockets of valleys and hills.
Dante's view is 5,475 feet in the air, but, with a jump off the ledge, you fall down to 270+ feet below sea level at Bad Water. At Bad Water is the salt flats of Death Valley, but then, only 10 miles in front of that is Telescope Peak which is 10,000+ feet in elevation!
From Furnace Creek, Dante's view is windy and steep stretch of road. When you get to Dante's View, there's a parking lot conveniently waiting for you. Plan to get here 15 minutes before sunset. At such a high altitude, the stillness of the air was quite remarkable.
Turn south off of 190 along the easten edge of the park for about 12 miles along the eastern edge of the park, climbing up the Black Mountains. At an elevation of about 5,500 feet, there's a large parking lot with a couple of trails. One is a foot path that takes you farther up the mountain, the other takes you down the mountain a little ways for some specatcular views of Badwater and the surrounding salty Earth. In the distance, you can also see the Panamint Mountain range.
Because the road here is two lanes, it can get pretty congested, so I suggest you take in Zabriskie Point and Dante's View as early as possible. Both are must-see sites, even though they are a little off the beaten path.
This is the best view of Death Valley from the eastern side. Looking across the valley, one can see the towering peaks of the Panamint Range. If you have time for just one brief visit to Death Valley, this is an excellent place to go. For more views, trying hiking up and down the trails along the ridge.
It's well worth the drive up; just be careful on the winding roads. Take your time getting up here.
This is one of the most famous and popular vista of Death Valley. Driving up to this elevation, you can sit and watch the world below - a valley that has a hellish view from above. Need a lot of imagination though except that it is hot, dry and barren and bizzare.
Dante's View is one of the most amazing views in the United States. After driving about 15 miles up a remote side road, you finally reach the top of a 5000+ foot tall mountain ridge and are rewarded with an amazing view out over Death Valley. Directly below you is Badwater, which at 282 feet below sea level is the lowest point in the USA. Directly across the Valley are the Panamint Mountains, which reach over 11,000 feet. This is a must see for any visitor to Death Valley!
A great view of the Badwater Basin ( (-282 ft / -85.95 m) from Dante's view at (5,475 ft / 1,669 m). For an extra adventure in spring travel through the city of Shoshone and take Hwy 178 into the park. Then travel the 35 mile dirt and gravel road through the Greenwater area. Lots of lovely wildflowers if the time is right and a nice drive. For the less adventurous take I-90 (when it reopens) to see this great view. Really nice in the Spring of 2005 as the extra rain fall and the temporary closure of I-90 make this site both beautiful and sparsely visited. We spent almost an hour there and saw only one other person. This site is easily accessible to people with disabilities.
Besides the landscape into the Death Valley, Dantes view can also give an interesting landscape towards several mountain ranges. On this picture, they fade into the background, the further they are, the more they fade.
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