Death Valley may be renown as the lowest point in the U.S., but Panamint Valley is actually deeper and narrower than Death Valley

Panamint Valley was once home to tens of thousands of gold and silver miners during its many mining booms.

The US Navy and Air Force use Panamint Valley for training, and very low-level overflights are a common sight for visitors.

Panamint Valley is like Death Valley without the crowds—as deep and almost as hot. Completely ringed by sharp mountain ranges, the alkali flats on the valley floor shimmer in the summer heat. Burbling creeks pour out of canyons in the Panamint Range to the east and the Argus Range to the west, creating corridors of green life that support thriving habitat for rare desert birds and reptiles.

Panamint Valley

A Native homeland

The Panamint Valley is one of the ancestral homes of the Timbisha Shoshone, and there are still Native lands at Indian Ranch.

The mines of the past

Mining history is also evident throughout the Valley, including most prominently the fascinating ghost town of Ballarat. Successive mining booms left their traces up many of the canyons above Panamint Valley, and more intrepid visitors can explore these relics and ruins on foot.

Things to do in Panamint Valley

Hike the Valley

The canyons above Panamint Valley offer hikers unlimited exploration. Frequently inundated with water, these oases in the desert create an interesting and varied backcountry experience.

Go Four-Wheeling

The Valley has numerous rough-and-tumble four-wheel drive routes. Visitors can reach the Argus Range on the west side of the Valley, with some of the least-traveled spots in the California Desert.

How About a Camping Trip?

Camp by one of the bajada slopes and watch the Panamint Range light up at sunset.

*Please remember to follow all applicable rules and regulations, and stay on designated routes in order to protect the desert for everyone to enjoy. These Lands are for all of us. Please do your part.