Death Valley National Park

Hiking Surprise Canyon in Death Valley

A good hike through Surprise Canyon averages about four hours. Many people go far over that and trek into Panamint City, but the canyon is well worth the time to explore on its own–picture relaxing with your feet in the splashing creek and a nice picnic in the shade after a good workout. Use these detailed directions and trail tips to experience all the canyon has to offer.

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Death Valley’s Five Strangest Places

Amidst Death Valley’s barbed desert expanses, lonesome stretches of highway, twisting dirt roads, and eternal quiet, life (and possibly even death) seems to take on a different shape. From creepy to beautiful, mysterious to moving, ridiculous to sublime, here are five of the strangest places expert author Jenna Blough has encountered in her many desert rambles.

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Featured National Parks Guide

Moon Guides Author Spotlight

Jenna Blough

Jenna Blough grew up on the edge of the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains, where she was allowed to run wild, instilling a love of the outdoors early on. After her parents dragged her and her sister on a cross-country road trip of epic proportions—visiting American classics like Wall Drug in South Dakota, Mesa Verde in Colorado, and the Petrified Forest in Arizona—she developed an equal appreciation for Wild West roadside attractions, historic sites, and wilderness.

Jenna eventually found the California desert to be her geographic soul mate. Drawn by the austere beauty of Death Valley, she is fascinated by its cultural history, ghost towns, native sites, and the Mojave’s shifting landscape.

Jenna Blough is the author of Moon Death Valley National Park and Moon Palm Springs & Joshua Tree.