Drive through the Colorful Mountains of Artist's Palette
Artist’s Drive is a 9.7 mile scenic drive in Death Valley National Park. It’s a lonely winding road that snakes through the desert and paves the way into a wonderland of colorful mountains.
When To Go
Best month’s to go: February, March and November (April and October could work too, but bring more water and hike in the mornings and evenings)
Tip: Wear shoes with good tread
There are several places to park and take in the view along the way. The desert is filled with beautiful vistas, especially on a cloudy day.
Park in the Artist Point Parking lot. You’ll cross through a river wash from the parking lot that looks like below. These types of washes are all over Death Valley. Rivers once flowed here and carved out a path into the earth. A glow of soft light lit the wash with a tint of yellow the morning we went.
The most notable stop along this drive is Artist’s Palette, where the oxidation of rich metals paint the mountains creating greens, purples, reds, oranges and yellows. The color saturation varies on the lighting. This site is a great place to park and wander around the mountains.
We walked around scaling and descending from all of the vibrant mountains, exploring freely and peacefully.
It’s really quiet and serene here, wandering around looking at at the interesting deposits that create these unique colors of earth. I highly recommend you add this to your list of things to see in Death Valley.
For a full list of things to do check out my post 3 Days In Death Valley National Park.
Do you have any other great recommendations for this drive? Please leave them in the comments below.
Just For Fun Park Tees
These tees are unnecessary for hiking, but it’s always fun to get a tank or tee with the National Park name on it for photos. I found these Tees on Etsy.