Panamint Runs

Please note: These run descriptions are subject to change. Sign-ups will be on a first-come, first-served basis when you arrive at base camp.

Panamint Valley Days Runs

Click on each run name for a full description.

Backdoor to Darwin

Backdoor to Darwin

Join us as we follow part of the old toll road from Darwin to Death Valley. We will pass many old mining areas and structures, as well as unusual geologic formations, a cemetery and the old town of Darwin. The terrain will include dirt, sand, gravel, sharp rocks, some climbing, side-hill roads and some steep walled canyons. This is an all vehicle run, with vehicles needing good off-road tires (for the rocks) and some clearance. This trip will last most of the day, so bring lunch, camera, FLASHLIGHT!, sturdy shoes, sunscreen and layered clothing. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Centennial Flat

Centennial Flat

Run is new for this year. It will depart PVD Headquarters on Saturday, November 10 via Slate Range Road, Panamint Valley Road, CA-190, Saline Valley Road to Boxcar Cabin. We will cross Centennial Flat to the cabin near Lower Centennial Springs, then to Darwin, China Garden Springs, and Darwin Falls. Participants may choose to hike to Darwin Falls (1 mile each way) or return to PVD Headquarters (all day run). This run will traverse public roads to Boxcar Cabin, then BLM land until Darwin, then DVNP land to Darwin Falls. This run is suitable for all vehicles with 4WD and high clearance. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Coyote Canyon

Coyote Canyon

The trail is fairly technical with rocks and such most of the way and is fairly slow speed with NO hard climbs or off camber. Although rocky, it would not be "rock crawling”, just slow. This is a fairly short canyon with a great variety of different rocks (sizes and colors) and geologic features (including a lot of "stretched rock" formations). There is a bunker, cabin and mining debris at the end, and a hike up to the mine if you are so inclined. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Cummins Cutoff/Defense Mine

Cummins Cutoff/Defense Mine

Vehicles must have a LIFT, 35” tires, & LOCKERS and you may incur BODY DAMAGE. Due to summer storms & lack of trail use, some of the obstacles have become more challenging. NO STOCK SUV’s. We will be taking the most challenging obstacles up the canyons to the Defense Mine. Under carriage and body damage is possible. Trail leader has final approval of vehicles for participation, keeping the best interest of the entire group in mind. This run follows what’s left of the Minnietta Mine Road end route to Stone Canyon until its closure just below Waterfall #1. The route provides several rocky and scenic miles with the challenges of Waterfall “Zero” and Cummins Cutoff (which is easier than in past years). Just below Waterfall #1, we will make a sharp right onto the Defense Mine Road, which is scenic, historical and pretty challenging. It will be the decision of the run leader whether to continue up to the Defense Mine. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Defense Mine

Defense Mine

Vehicles must have a LIFT, 35” tires, & LOCKERS and you may incur BODY DAMAGE. Due to summer storms & lack of trail use, some of the obstacles have become more challenging. NO STOCK SUV’s. Trail leader has final approval of vehicles for participation, keeping the best interest of the entire group in mind. Participants will have ample time to complete mine exploration before leaving, giving them the option to visit Lookout City and/or other nearby routes. Please remember that mine exploration is optional and at your own risk and that this was an active mine operation, so, PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH ANYTHING SUSPICIOUS. Bring flashlights. CHILDREN MUST BE WATCHED CLOSELY AT ALL TIMES & NO PETS IN THE MINE. From the entrance, it is an easy standup walk of about 300’ to the first “explosive storage room” (empty except for work benches) and the first “ore chute” is beyond that. For the adventurous, there is a second entrance/exit climbing several well-built wooden ladders to several landings, where you change to the next ladder. (It is somewhat intimidating to stand at the bottom and look up at these ladders). Caution should be exercised if you explore the mine and extreme caution should be used near the ore car platforms outside the main entrance. PLEASE REMEMBER THAT MINE EXPLORATION IS OPTIONAL AND AT YOUR OWN RISK. Anyone not doing the mine exploration is free to take the short route back to camp (we’ll point it out on the way in) and also may have ample time to explore nearby Lookout City if so desire. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Fish Canyon

Fish Canyon

Both Fish Canyon and the upper end of Coyote now require a stock Wrangler or equivalent, at least in ground clearance. STOCK SUV’s NOT RECOMMENDED. This historic run will have a few rocky sections and loose dirt areas. Expect great views from the top of the Slate Range. SIDE TRIP to HISTORIC MARKER: This short part of the trail will require vehicles to have at least 31” tires and at least 1 locker. Those not going will have to relax and take in the views. Once the group is back together again, you will continue on down into Panamint Valley, crossing the southern end of the dry lake, then turn north to the entrance of Coyote Canyon. Here you may continue north to Ballarat and back to camp or join us up Coyote Canyon - The trail is fairly technical with rocks and such most of the way and is fairly slow speed with NO hard climbs or off camber. Although rocky, it would not be "rock crawling”, just slow. This is a fairly short canyon with a great variety of different rocks (sizes and colors) and geologic features (including a lot of "stretched rock" formations). There is a bunker, cabin and mining debris at the end, and a hike up to the mine if you are so inclined. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Goler Wash / Barker Ranch

Goler Wash / Barker Ranch

This is an all-wheel-base, full day run with lots of history thrown in. Due to some erosion of the trail, it is advisable to have at least 31” tires and a traction aiding devise of some kind in the rear, such as a limited slip diff, a selectable locking diff, or a full locked diff. The first stop will be at Ballarat Ghost Town to air down. Then it’s on to Goler Wash where you will get to see Newman’s Cabin, then into Death Valley where you will see Barker Ranch where the Manson Family lived and Manson hid. You will return the way you came in. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Goler Wash / Mengle Pass / Striped Butte Valley

Goler Wash / Mengle Pass / Striped Butte Valley

This is an all-wheel-base, full day run with lots of history thrown in. Due to some erosion of the trail, it is advisable to have at least 31” tires and a traction aiding devise of some kind in the rear, such as a limited slip diff, a selectable locking diff, or a full locked diff. The first stop will be at Ballarat Ghost Town to air down. Then it’s on to Goler Wash where you will get to see Newman’s Cabin, over Mengle Pass into Death Valley where you will see Russell’s Camp, Greater View Cabin, Striped Butte and the Geology Cabin. If time allows, there could be a side trip to Barker Ranch. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Historic Run: Slate Range, Riley, Copper King, Panamint Crater & Snow Canyon

Historic Run: Slate Range, Riley, Copper King, Panamint Crater & Snow Canyon

This is an all-vehicle run with 31” tires and a bit of a lift or skid plates recommended. The roads tend to change at the whim of Mother Nature, so there’s always a few rocky sections and loose dirt areas. We’ll see several different historic mining eras and structures in addition to different natural and geological zones. We’ll see a Chinese camp and roads; early era Riley with stone structures; the Panamint Crater; an onyx mine site; an adorable cabin up a tight canyon; and then on to Snow Canyon where the Golden Lady and the St. George mines have extensive workings to see and there will be some opportunities to hike and explore. If you have planned to make the Lookout Sunset run, you could run out on the Nadeau Shotgun Road where it intersects with Snow Canyon. Depending on the time, you could then decide whether to go west into Snow Canyon, or to turn east to the Minnietta Road, turn north and meet the group Lookout City Sunset group at the base of Thompson Canyon, however, make sure you have read the vehicle requirements for the Lookout City Sunset run. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Isham Canyon

Isham Canyon

Isham has been severely washed out over the past years and this has significantly increased the technical nature of the run. It is more like a Hammers trail now. Given the current condition of the trail, the run is limited to 12 vehicles, not including trail leads. Minimum requirements: 35” tires, front and rear lockers, winch, body armor/rock sliders. Additional useful items: Spares parts as applicable to your vehicle (i.e., u-joints, rear driveshaft, etc.), tire repair kit/spare tire. Long arm lifts will work far better than short arm. Longer wheelbase vehicles and rigs with hard tops are likely to have a tight fit in some places and those drivers MUST BE AWARE that some form of body damage is probable. All drivers/participants are expected to assist each other at obstacles with spotting and recovery (winching/tow straps/stacking rocks). Bring gloves, good footwear. Expect this to be a longish day, depending on the number of vehicles. Bring lunch as we will be out at least until mid-afternoon. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Jackpot Canyon

Jackpot Canyon

This is an all-wheel-base run with at least 33” tires and a limited slip diff recommended. This is a fairly technical run with an experienced driver recommended. We will be running an old, non-maintained mining road that contains sharp rocks, gravel, sand, steep climbs and descents, narrow roadways, rain run-off, road cuts & ruts, shelf roads and some side hills. This run is not for the faint of heart! We will go up a rocky wash before climbing up the canyon. There are some great views of Panamint Valley and diverse terrain, finally arriving at an old mine. If there’s time, we can visit another mine on the way back. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Jail Canyon

Jail Canyon

This is an all-wheel-base run; good tires and a limited slip and decent ground clearance recommended. Rocky trail going into the canyon and to the mining works and the cabins at Jail Camp, with an optional short hike to the Corona mine if desired. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Lookout City Sunset Run

Lookout City Sunset Run

This run is limited to the first 15 vehicles that sign up. Vehicles must have a LIFT, 35” tires, and LOCKERS and you may incur BODY DAMAGE. Due to summer storms & lack of trail use, some of the obstacles have become more challenging. NO STOCK SUV’s. Trail leader has final approval of vehicles for participation. This scenic run will take you to the Lookout City ruins high atop the Argus Range for a spectacular sunset view of the Panamint Range and Valley, but first you have to get up the Minnietta Mine Road, WHICH IS ALMOST NON-EXISTENT and Stone Canyon. Cold temperatures can be expected, so bring your warm clothes. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Nadeau National Recreation Historic Run

Nadeau National Recreation Historic Run

This is an all-wheel-base run with plenty of history thrown in. Round Trip About 55~60 Miles. On this run we will be running the old NADEAU ROAD, from the top of the Slate Range crossing to Lookout City. There will be some spots that you will need four-wheel drive! We will visit Snow Canyon, go into Thompson Canyon and see the ruins of the Minnietta mine and the miners cabin. After this stop we will go up to the top of Lookout Mtn. for Lunch. We will be SERVING A FREE LUNCH At the stop at LOOKOUT CITY ( Hot Dogs, Cold Potato Salad, Cold Soda, Cold Water, Chips ) however, Donation's Gladly Taken!

Topographic maps and a very good history of the area will be given to the drivers on the run. The run back to camp will be on paved roads A full tank of gas is a must for this run. Bring: CAMERA & CHAIRS.

South Park To Pleasant Canyon

South Park To Pleasant Canyon

This is an all-wheel-base run; however, it is recommended that stock vehicles have 31” tires and a limited slip diff. We will explore/see the Brigg’s Cabins, cross the new bridge replacement, and old mining operation and the trail has a spectacular view of Death Valley from the top. You can expect this to be an all-day run. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Pleasant Canyon To South Park Canyon

Pleasant Canyon To South Park Canyon

This is an all-wheel-base run; however, it is recommended that stock vehicles have 31” tires and a limited slip diff. We will explore an old mining operation and the trail has a spectacular view of Death Valley from the top. You can expect this to be an all-day run. BRING LUNCH & CHAIRS.

Run Schedule

Runs are scheduled for Friday, Saturday & Sunday. Schedule subject to change - be sure to check the event schedule onsite.
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