death valley and desert

littlenylittleny Beginner grinnerPosts: 9Registered Users Beginner grinner
im gonna be in death valley next weekend. i only have 1 night and 2 partial days. im staying in furnace creek. im so confused where i should go. i have only 1 sunrise and 1 sunset to catch in this short trip. i thought about mesquite dunes for sunrise since i was advised its better to shoot there in the morning cus the overnight winds will hopefully blow out the footprints.
BUT then i was told zabrinski point is a must do at sunrise, altho another poster's shot here is convincing me to rethink that and perhaps shoot it at sunset. then of course i gotta fit in badwater salt basin. so i need some help here. you guys seem to know about this location. please help.

Comments

  • DavidTODavidTO Mod Emeritus Posts: 19,160Administrators moderator
    edited April 27, 2012
    So much depends on the weather and how interesting the sky/clouds are. But here are my thoughts.

    1) Badwater. Cool, but you'll never get an awesome sunrise/set shot there, as the mountains run along the east/west sides blocking the first/last light of the day. There's a brief moment as the shadow of the mountains passes across the salt flat that you get some great texture from the low angled light. Midday the light is flat and not worth the visit. More interesting can be dusk/dawn/night. You'll have a full moon which can be too much light (it overpowers your ability to get starlight). But it might be interesting to shoot a night sky while the moon is low in the sky, casting some good textured light on the flats.

    2) Zabriskie Point: The point that people are looking at is actually Manly Beacon, the point itself is the observation point (thanks to wfeller for clearing that up for me). The best thing to do here is to hike down from the top or up from the bottom through Golden Canyon. We did it at sunset and if the clouds hadn't moved in (and the beer and pizza hadn't been calling so loudly) it would have been awesome to stick around and to shoot the stars. Golden Canyon in sunset/rise/dusk/dawn is a great place to explore, there's a lot to shoot.

    3) Mesquite Dunes: The tracks that people are talking emanate from the the parking lot. You can either walk far enough in to get away from them or avoid the parking lot altogether. I like to park to the west of the dunes and walk across the flat area to approach from the side. The dunes are smaller there, but you can walk farther in to get some bigger ones, and really, the small ones just mean that there are more interesting lines with less walking. The dunes are another great place to shoot the stars at night.

    4) Cow Creek: At mile marker 102 along Badwater Road. A great place to shoot. Water on the flats. Nice.
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  • littlenylittleny Beginner grinner Posts: 9Registered Users Beginner grinner
    edited April 27, 2012
    wow...cool. alot of great info.

    i think im gonna do badwater or devils golf course at night. im confused though...is golden canyon accessible from zabrinskie point? and in your opinion, if i had to choose between the dunes at sunset or sunrise and likewise for golden canyon what would you do?
  • DavidTODavidTO Mod Emeritus Posts: 19,160Administrators moderator
    edited April 27, 2012
    littleny wrote: »
    wow...cool. alot of great info.

    i think im gonna do badwater or devils golf course at night. im confused though...is golden canyon accessible from zabrinskie point? and in your opinion, if i had to choose between the dunes at sunset or sunrise and likewise for golden canyon what would you do?

    Golden Canyon runs from Badwater Road up to Zabriskie Point. You can walk either way. I think it's about 2 miles, one way.

    I like sunrise at the dunes. I also like the dunes at night.

    My DV photos
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  • littlenylittleny Beginner grinner Posts: 9Registered Users Beginner grinner
    edited April 28, 2012
    DavidTO wrote: »
    Golden Canyon runs from Badwater Road up to Zabriskie Point. You can walk either way. I think it's about 2 miles, one way.

    I like sunrise at the dunes. I also like the dunes at night.

    My DV photos

    gotcha..much thanks!
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