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Lipstick on the Pig (Jan 2022)

Exploring Death Valley during the winter months is usually a good choice. Given the wintery-cold temps and snow elsewhere, the relatively cooler - but still pleasantly warm at 60-75°F - days in the desert a welcome break from the dreary days in the Pacific Northwest.

It was with this in mind that I decided to plan a trip to the southwestern Panamint Mountains to explore the area I'd discovered along the Pleasant Canyon-to-Lower Park loop on my previous trip just a month before. We'd rushed that section a bit - completing it in about four hours, and I hoped that giving myself 48 hours would do several of the spur roads and abandoned mines justice.

The only thing I didn't factor in was... winter.

We'd end up spending much of the trip at a series of talc mines. Talc of course is a primary ingredient in makeup, so you could say we were - essentially - putting lipstick on the pig.


Change of Plans - Lipstick #1 Change of Plans | Lipstick #1 - Having replaced the transfer case that had given up the ghost on my previous trip to Death Valley, the new year and lots of rain at home was enough to get us back on the road and headed south again. It was a long drive - this time along a different route that would bring us in the west side of the park rather than the east - but we powered through and by 3:30am the following morning, we were setting up camp in Panamint Valley along the Nadeau Trail. Sleep never felt so good. Waking up for sunrise didn't…
One Dunes Down - Lipstick #2 One Dunes Down | Lipstick #2 - Unlike the previous morning when we slept in, I had my alarm set for early-o-clock so I could catch the sunrise from our camp site at the north end of Panamint Valley along the Big Four Mine Road. Oh, and so that we could get an early start on our 9-mile hike to the Panamint Dunes! Colorful but cropped, due to our position relative to the Panamint Mountains. A soft purple hue spread across the valley, our destination appearing tantalizingly close. I can tell you now, that it is most definitely not close. The tent was stowed, breakfast consumed, and…
Two Dunes Down - Lipstick #3 Two Dunes Down | Lipstick #3 - It was another pleasant night at the southern end of Death Valley National Park. We slept soundly, a light breeze wafting through the tent as the moon passed by overhead. Clouds built slowly and morning brought the brightest sunrise of the trip - an opportunity I took full advantage of with the Ibex Dunes rising in the distance. As I climbed down the ladder, I was a little excited to see the color starting in the sky. There was potential here, for sure! A few minutes later, and boom, color everywhere! Below, the dunes reflected the warm orange glow in…
It's Mine, Mine, Mine - All Mines! - Lipstick #3 It's Mine, Mine, Mine - All Mines! | Lipstick #4 - Hoping for a repeat of the previous morning, I was up early to capture a sunrise that never materialized. With few clouds in the sky - especially above the eastern horizon - there was nothing for the sun to highlight as it made its daily appearance just before 7:00am. Even without a fiery sky, the Ibex Hills gave our camp site a lot of color. What did you contain, rusty can? Having gotten a taste of some really nice talc mines the previous day, our final day in the park was going to be a whirlwind of the same. Before…
Rig Review - What worked and what didn't Winter 2022? Rig Review - What worked and what didn't Winter 2022? - March 15, 2022. Time flies when you're having fun, and the last several trips have been exactly that. A regular reader may recall that my last rig review was just as the transfer case blew up on my Back for More trip to Death Valley. Since then, the truck has been out four more times (which obviously indicates that at least something has gone right! . Lipstick on the Pig (Jan 2022) Hiking Saline Valley (Jan 2022) Almost Stranded (Mar 2022) Seemingly solved from previous Rig Reviews I Need New Seats The Drawer in the In-Cab Battery Cabinet Rattles Transfer…


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  1. Robert Powell
    Robert Powell March 7, 2022

    Is there a reason the installments for this adventure are not linked here?

    • Robert Powell
      Robert Powell March 7, 2022

      Nevermind....seemed to be a browser cache issue.

      • turbodb
        turbodb March 7, 2022

        Glad it's working for you now Robert, you had me worried there for a minute! Enjoy the stories, and let me know if you have any other questions or run into any issues! ?

        • Robert Powell
          Robert Powell March 7, 2022

          Planning a trip next week to several of the areas in your trip report(s) and wanted to forward the link to my pals. Great pics and report all around. Thanks again!

          • turbodb
            turbodb March 7, 2022

            Nice! Have fun out there and of course be safe! I'm headed down again myself, hopefully to explore the areas we weren't able to on this "Lipstick" trip" due to snow! ?

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