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  1. Thoughts on visiting Death Valley National Park (about a 5-hour drive from LA and 2.5-hour drive from Las Vegas) from a recent conversation: --- On the wildflower "Superbloom": According to the NPS webpage, the wildflower season goes from early spring through the summer, moving from low to high elevation. Will it still be the "superbloom" [in March] or just have some nice flowers here and there, I have no idea. I would call the park ASAP before you make any plans and see what they think. I do know that the flower peak where I live in SoCal does not last more than a couple weeks, and the superbloom is already into at least week 1 or 2, but I live at a specific elevation, so there might still be a superbloom somewhere in the park when you want to come. The park has a nice report and a video here: "Wildflower Update 2016" on nps.gov and I found this nifty website that has a lot of info you would be interested in: "Death Valley NP - Wildflower Reports" on desertusa.com Maybe contact those folks and see what they think about your proposed timeline? They also have some tips on where specifically to go for shooting flowers. --- On where to stay: Finally, if you do get to come out, and I hope you do, stay in the park if you possibly can. It's a HUGE park, the biggest by area in the continental US, I believe, and it takes forever to drive in and out. If you're coming for a short trip, it's worth it to stay at one of the places inside the park: "Death Valley Lodging" on nps.gov The only time I've been we camped, so I can't offer any insights about the specific lodgings. If you have a tent and are willing to fly with it, car camping was super easy, cheap, and I'd highly recommend it. Impressions wise, I think there are more places to stay coming in from the East (Vegas) side of the park rather than the West. --- On being a Dark Sky Park: If you can't sleep in the park, stay in the park at least one night as late as possible. As a Dark Sky Park, the nighttime sky view is one of the best in the country, even better than Joshua Tree!!! We did one of the nighttime ranger talks which was mostly kid-oriented and a little cheesy, but it was fun looking out at the stars in a group for a while (before wandering off to do our own thing). --- On the Star Wars tour (it was a shooting location for the originals): Oh, by the way, in case you are a Star Wars fan: "Star Wars in Death Valley" on panamintcity.com I didn't find this site until we got home from our trip and we were so glad that we hit a few of the locations by accident.
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