It took me three trips to Death Valley to get to Panamint Dunes.
The first time I failed because I didn’t do my homework. I thought I would drive up to them, maybe walk a bit, and then enjoy the evening light on all the curves and textures. I didn’t realize that the six-mile dirt road would take so long to drive. I also didn’t realize that the road ends four miles from the dunes and is still 1400 feet below their peaks. Needless to say, I didn’t get an early enough start and got shut out.
On my second trip to Death Valley I got a flat tire about half way down the dirt road and decided not to go the rest of the way with no spare. Shut out again.
On this trip I started early, went slow on the road, and left plenty of time to hike. It was well worth the effort. Panamint Dunes are gorgeous. They are bigger and much less foot-printed than the popular Mesquite Dunes. It’s a new favorite spot.