Death Valley National Park Cycling Hub Tour
Includes all lodging, all meals, van shuttle between Las Vegas and Death Valley, park entrance fees, leaders, tour maps and narratives.
Las Vegas, NV
Timberline van shuttle between Las Vegas and Death Valley is included prior to and following tour.
Not included: Airline service to McCarran International Airport, NV, Guide Gratuity.
Airport 1:30 pm, Las Vegas hotel 2:00 pm
The names of our Death Valley cycling tour are exciting; Death Valley, Dante’s View, Badwater, Hell’s Gate. Death Valley has an instantaneous emotional impact on everyone who sees it. That initial view from Zabriskie Point across the vastness of the valley floor to the distant Panamint Peaks rising from the valley clad in an unmistakable mantle of snow is unlike anything that you have ever experienced in a cycling trip. Death Valley National Park is the largest national park in the lower 48 states. Its 3.3 million acres are nestled between two mountain ranges, and its Badwater Basin is 282’ below sea level – the lowest point in North America. In fact, during our visit we will get a view of the Badwater Basin at 282.2’ below sea level and Telescope Peak at 11,040 ft above sea level.
The park’s paved roads offer a beautiful bicycling experience through a rich palette of surreal desert geography and an assortment of topography from level desert spinning to sustained climbs. The sun-soaked days and cool evenings make it the perfect setting for cycling for our February Hub Tour. We have time on the agenda for scenic rides as well as time at the pool.
The first day we will assemble in Las Vegas and drive into the National Park, stopping for a chance to stretch our legs before checking into our resort where we will get our bikes fitted and have an orientation dinner.
Day 2, after breakfast we’re off on a ride through striking desert terrain to the Harmony Borax Works, once the central feature of the Death Valley area and then up to Stovepipe Wells. Here you can hop off your bike to admire Mesquite Flats, one of the largest sand dune networks in the United States. On your way back to the hotel, as you descend into the valley, notice the Great Salt Flats shimmering in the distance—the mirage makes it appear as if you’ve reached the ocean’s shore. The magnificent Panamint Range to the west and the Grapevine and Funeral mountains to the east frame the ride. At the end of our ride, a stop at the visitor center and the Borax Museum is called for to learn more about the area’s natural history. A spring-fed, Olympic-size pool and golf course will await us at the Oasis Ranch our home for the week.
On Day 3, we get a taste of the climbing in Death Valley. We pedal off to Badwater in the morning on a relatively level road. On the way back there is the option to take the turn for Artist’s Palette, where there is a 2000 ft climb 8 miles, with a couple of short and sweet steep sections. The hill can be skipped if you have an appointment with the pool.
Day 4 it is off to Ubehebe Crater with a chance to hike own into the crater, or just enjoy the views from the rim. The 20 miles back to our hotel starts with a great downhill then turns relatively flat.
Day 5 we head to Dante’s View. We set out from the Oasis Resort on a gently ascending warm-up stretch across beautiful wide valleys. Early in our ride we will stop at Zabriskie Point to enjoy the views, then it is back to the bikes. After about 20 miles, the grade increases. The last mile to the top has switch- backs and a steep grade winding through a narrow canyon to the top. The colorful manganese- and iron-rich hillsides and lizards zipping through the brush alongside the road provide a nice distraction during our push to the top. The spectacular 360-degree panorama from Dante’s View makes the effort worthwhile, or you can catch the Timberline van for a boost to the top if you are ready to enjoy the views. You can see for miles in every direction! On a clear February day it’s possible to spot the highest point in the park (snow- dusted Telescope Peak at 11,049 feet) and the lowest (Badwater at 282 feet below sea level) simultaneously. Take in the incredible vista while enjoying lunch before zooming back downhill.
Day 6 we head North to Hells Gate for one more ride in the park. We return via Beatty Cutoff for the conclusion of our cycling adventure. We will have lunch prior to our return to Las Vegas.
|Day 1||Group assembles in Las Vegas, van shuttle to Death Valley National Park; hike Sand Dunes, overnight at the Oasis|
|Day 2||Stovepipe Wells and Borax Works||49|
|Day 3||Badwater Basin, Artist Palette (3559')||43|
|Day 4||Ubehehe Crater||39|
|Day 5||Dante's View-Zabriskie Point (5664')||47|
|Day 6||Hells Gate (2941'), shuttle back to Las Vegas||45|
Total Distance: 28 - 32 miles
- The Oasis at Death Valley