Death Valley in the autumn!

Trip Start Mar 04, 2005
Trip End Dec 31, 2014

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Flag of United States  , California
Wednesday, November 9, 2011

We pulled in to the Furnace Creek section of Death Valley and were surprised to find hundreds of RV's here.  I was fairly confident that we would have the place pretty much to ourselves!  After all, we pulled in on a Wednesday in the middle of November.  What in the world were all these people doing here?!?

Come to find out that there is an annual week long get together here over the second week of November - and we had arrived in the middle of it!  It is a gathering of a group called the 49ers'.  We talked to quite a few of the participants and still don't have a clear understanding of what exactly they are all about.  It either has to do with the actor Jimmy Stewart coming out here in 1949 or the gold miners from 1849 or something else entirely! 

Whatever the case may be, they were having a great time.  They had scheduled golf tournaments, horse shoe competitions, nightly 'fiddle' music, a wagon train and horse back riders coming in after spending days crossing the desert.  They also dressed up in period costumes and had  craft shows.  After hanging out with them for a few days I am pretty sure that the purpose of their group is to just spend a week in the desert having fun! 

We managed to do quite a bit of sightseeing in the 'lowest & hottest' spot in North America.  We haven't been here in years and, much like the Grand Canyon, were surprised by the stark beauty that has been set aside by this National Park.  Of course, we had cool, overcast weather which made our hiking and sightseeing quite pleasant.  I can not imagine being here in the heat of the summer when temps top 115 and don't cool off at night! 
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