Wednesday, March 16, 2011

213 Feet Below Sea Level

I have never been this low. Even as a teen surfing at Santa Cruz and being slammed into the bottom of the ocean. Death Valley is well below sea level
Last night was spent at Stove Pipe Wells. They had some construction going on, and from when we checked in, until aboot 8:00 pm we had no water.

Today was a spectacular day of picture taking
Mesquite Flat sand dunes was the first order of the day. We hiked out before the sun came up, with one led flashlight, so we could catch the first light. The Milky Way was sparkling overhead, and a very bright Venus was low in the east.
We scampered over sand dunes to get a good spot…

Back at Stovepipe Wells some more coffee and breakfast was, required. Later while loading the bikes the couple two up on a Victory who just happened to be from Palmer Alaska, said that they were very upset aboot not having any water until 8:00 pm The fellow said he had gone and complained to the front desk and the manager, and that Xanterra the company that operates all the concessions in the park comped their room.
Were my negotiation skills up to the task? Would that Folgers restaurant coffee render my French Pressed Kaladi Koffee powerless? No it wouldn’t all I had to say was we are bikers and don’t travel in air condition cars, we needed showers…and the room was free!
How pathetic is that? More than one human has died in this desert, because they either had no water or drank the brackish alkyd water that flows into bad water basin where we are tonight.

Salt Creek is where we spent most of the day. Hiking out past the boardwalk, and capturing this fab landscape on sd cards.

Tonight’s deluxe accommodations are at the 4 Diamond Furnace Creek Lodge.

Reservations required for dinner. Dining room dress code requires. No shorts. No sandals, and no tank tops. The fillets were good but the ones at Club Paris or Rice Bowl, I think are better. The pool. The water comes from a natural hot spring. It is wonderful. Not much chlorine as the water flows in and out. The room, the grounds, the building, is luxury, from the golden age. The shower is off the chart refreshing.

The only thing wrong with this place is that you have to pay for Internet access or use the computer at the bar….

On the Maple Surple Run last summer even in the smallest hamlet, everywhere we rode
Internet access was free. What a surprise to find that not the case here in this desert oasis.
More sun is in the forecast for today, but Im wearing long sleeves as my arms are red as ripe tomatoes, and lots of sunscreen everywhere else.

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