Tag Archives: Death Valley Jim
Secret Places in the Mojave Desert Vol. III is now available and shipping!!
A lonely cabin nestled inside of a deserted canyon, a wall of ancient rock art left undisturbed
throughout the ages, a pile of forgotten relics left to rust and shimmer in the sun – these are the secret places of the Mojave Desert.
Death Valley Jim has taken his interest in these secret places to a hobby, to a passion, to his life.
Jim initially began visiting these places casually while on vacation to visit his family. A love affair with
the desert was forged soon thereafter, compelling him to move to this wonderland, filled with rich
history and mystery. Death Valley Jim is now a resident and historian of the Mojave and
his dream is to be able to spark the same kind of passion and interest in the desert for others.
Whether you’re new to the Mojave Desert or a longtime resident, this book will reveal the story about the places and people that made these mysteries possible. Perhaps you will find your favorite secret place or discover some new places you’ve never heard of. Take a trip down desolate; yet historic Route 66, visit the still intact Death Valley Mine, the well preserved pictographs of Lake Isabella and the Tehachapi Mountains, blaze the Bonanza Trail in the El Paso Mountains, and much more.
Historians, archeological enthusiasts, amateur prospectors and mining enthusiasts, tourists, and
local residents alike are invited to join Death Valley Jim in following him in the footsteps of those
who blazed the trails of one of the most unique places in the world known as the Mojave Desert.
The secret places are there to discover, now just to find them for yourself.
Includes GPS coordinates and maps!
Death Valley Jim is hard at work on volume III of the “Secret Places in the Mojave Desert” series. Expect a release in May of 2013.
For the the first time Jim is including GPS coordinates to each site that is presented in the book.
PREORDERS are being taken now.
The Mojave Desert was settled long before the white man stepped foot on its soil in the 1800′s in search of riches. The earliest inhabitants left their mark on this vast landscape in the form of pictographs and petroglyphs (painted and carved designs on stones). To some these writings are a form of ancient graffiti, but to the descendants of those that created these pieces of art they hold a spiritual meaning.
Travel from the Alabama Hills in Lone Pine to the ancient lake of Little Lake, to the Kern River Valley, the mountains of Indian Wells and the foothills of the Tehachapis. ANALYZING ROCK ART OF THE MOJAVE DESERT takes a closer look at these art galleries of the past.
Full color, enhanced imaging is presented that allows for an in-depth look at the fading designs before they slip into obscurity.
Death Valley Jim regrets to announce that the Death Valley Expedition that was scheduled between January 1st – January 15th has been postponed. Friends of Jim’s in the Park Service highly advised Jim to postpone based on the colder than usual winter temperatures and snow that has already blanketed the northern Last Chance Range where Jim had planned to begin the expedition.
Jim has tentatively rescheduled the expedition for the first half of March, however if winter weather clears prior to that time it may be moved to sooner.
Please continue to check back here for the latest news and updates regarding the expedition.
The November 30th 2012 edition of the Pahrump Valley Times ran the following article on the upcoming Death Valley expedition.
Due to the recent media attention surrounding my upcoming Death Valley Expedition in January I have come under scrutiny by a certain individual or individuals that wish to hide in anonymity while publicly ridiculing me. This person has taken it upon themselves to contact members of the press in an effort to silence them about my upcoming expedition, as well my work as an author, guide, and researcher.
The person made the following arguments to the media:
1. He has given the location of petroglyph sites despite being told not to.
2. He shouldn’t be giving guide services because he hasn’t been doing this long enough.
3. He probably won’t get a permit for his expedition.
The reporter that I have been working with was kind enough to bring this to my attention, and give me the opportunity to provide a rebuttle to these claims. I felt that it was in my best interest to further make public my rebuttal via my website.
Claim #1 – He has given the location of petroglyph sites despite being told not to.
Yes I have given out locations of petroglyphs via my website, books, and facebook page. The locations that I have given publicly are locations that have been well publicized by books, maps, and websites long before anyone had ever heard of Death Valley Jim (in some cases long before I was even born). These locations could have easily been found with a quick Google search, or trip to a local library.
For more sensitive locations, I have kept exact locations private – only giving hints and generic directions, leaving the person with a scavenger hunt to find what they are looking for. In some cases I haven’t given any details.
As for being told not to give locations, no person of any authority has ever contacted me asking me to keep locations private. I have to wonder who would have such authority to begin with (with the exception of private land). Does the BLM have the power to stop someone from providing locations to places on our public lands? Does the National Park Service? Not that I am aware of.
Why do I give out such information? I provide people like you and me the opportunity to see things that we more than likely wouldn’t have the opportunity to see. I can still remember the first time I saw my first petroglyph. I was with my wife driving through Black Canyon near Barstow, CA. I had heard from an online resource that petroglyphs are located there, I just had to get out there to see one for myself. Both my wife and I where so excited to finally see a petroglyph in person. Since then, we have both been hooked and spend a majority of our time hunting down rock art sites. What is amazing is that we had already spent years exploring the desert, but had never seen any rock art. For us every rock art site that we find brings this same joy and excitement to us.
I do understand the fact that rock art sites have been vandalized, and I am familiar with the recent destruction that took place in the Bishop area. I was the person that contacted the Bishop BLM Office to request that they set up a donation fund to raise the reward to possibly help catch the vandals. I do believe that most people out visiting rock art sites are doing so because they enjoy them. Most people do not sit around researching their next rock art site to vandalize.
I am a firm believer that historic sites should be open to public visitation. Since I began doing Death Valley Jim’s Desert Adventures I have had a good amount of opposition to this way of thinking. Far too many people for far too long have tried to keep these places quiet. They’ve tried to keep you and me out. They don’t want us there, they only want the place for themselves and their select buddies. This, my friends will only make these places forgotten about as these people die off in the years to come. You would think that the older generation would be excited to have a younger person with a fiery passion come along and want to soak up everything possible to be able to carry it on to the next generation. Sadly this is not the case, and a number of places of historical significance will end up forgotten about and disappeared because the only people who knew about them are no longer here. This is our history, our heritage, our humanity – and it deserves to be preserved and taught to future generations.
Claim #2 – He shouldn’t be giving guide services because he hasn’t been doing this long enough.
So you complain when I give locations, and you complain that I take people places. If I take someone somewhere they are there with someone that isn’t going to allow anything to be vandalized, but if they go alone they can vandalize all they want. Makes a lot of sense, right?
As for how long I’ve been exploring the desert, it’s been about five years now. In five years I have spent more time in the desert than most people have spent in it for twenty years. I know my routes, my history, and safety precautions. I have the ability to show people things that they would have no other way of seeing or finding. The people that have hired me have enjoyed their time with me as much as I have enjoyed showing the things that I love to them.
I don’t believe anyone is too old or too young, or too experienced or too inexperienced, or too this or too that to enjoy the beauty and majesty of nature. Especially the nature that resides right outside of our back door. In fact, perhaps our world would be a very different place than it is today if more people were connected with nature.
Once again this claim just comes full circle to the first claim. These “keepers” of the desert just don’t want you or I there. They want it all for themselves.
Claim #3 – He probably won’t get a permit for his expedition.
The expedition is a solo backcountry hike. I need a backcountry hiking permit, total cost $20.00. I think I can afford that.
I know that not everyone will see things the way that I do, and I’m fine with that. The same way I’m fine with disagreeing with them. However, to go out of your way to try to tarnish my name is unforgivable. I love my desert, and I will continue to share it with anyone that has interest and takes the time to listen.
EL PASO MOUNTAINS / RAND MOUNTAINS EXPEDITION
NOVEMBER 5th – 6th 2012
26 miles from start to finish.
Completed one day earlier than expected
Duffle Bag, Hiking Poll, Tent, Sleeping Bag, Hiking Shoes, Tin Cup, Spot Satellite Tracker, Coolpix S6100 Camera
Food / Beverage Consumed:
2 MRE Meals, 5 mini-bags of Somersault Snacks, 2 packs of oatmeal, 3 gallons of water, 2 cups of coffee
When: November 5, 6, 7th
Where: El Paso Mountain Wilderness (Ridgecrest, CA) to California City, CA
Distance: Roughly 41 miles
Route Map: Google Maps
This is a training expedition for the 15 day expedition across Death Valley in January 2013.
3 gallons of water
2 MRE meals
4 packs of instant oatmeal
10 small packages of Somersault Snacks
2 bags of sunflower seeds
6 instant coffee packets
Death Valley Jim, the 34 year old explorer, historian, and author will attempt his biggest challenge ever as he attempts to cross Death Valley National Park beginning at the northern most boundary and ending at the southern most boundary of the park. The start date is set for January 1st, 2013, and it is expected that it will take 15 days and nights to traverse the entire 150+ miles of the park. January temperatures in Death Valley range from the mid 30′s at night to the low 80′s during the day.
The planning stages are early at this point. A route map will be made available in the coming weeks that will detail the terrain in which Death Valley Jim will travel. During the expedition the public will be able to watch his progress via a SPOT navigation map which will detail his location at any time during the expedition.
With limited sources of water being available in the park, water drop points will be placed in undisclosed locations prior to the trek. This eliminates the need haul enough water for half a months journey.
Watch it all unfold at the website that has been set up for this expedition: www.mojavedesertadventure.com