15710
Nevada/California
Desert Landscapes: Valley of Fire, Death Valley and the Colorado River
Learn about desert landscapes from experts as you explore the ruggedly beautiful Death Valley, raft the Colorado River and discover ancient petroglyphs while hiking the Valley of Fire.
Rating (5)
Program No. 15710RJ
Length
7 days
Starts at
1,495
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7 days
6 nights
16 meals
6 B 5 L 5 D
Getting There
See travel details and required documents
DAY
1
Check-in, Registration, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Las Vegas, NV
D
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Las Vegas

Afternoon: 3:00-5:00 pm - Arrive, check-in and meet your group leader in the Hotel Lobby.

Dinner: Dinner catered by the DoubleTree Hilton, including entree, salad, vegetables, and a beverage.

Evening: Program orientation and introductions will immediately follow dinner in the hotel meeting room.

DAY
2
Valley of Fire Hiking, Dinner at Bellagio
Las Vegas, NV
B,L,D
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Las Vegas

Activity note: Hikes in Valley of Fire are mostly short, 1 mile or less round trips.

Breakfast: 6:30 to 8:00 am - DoubleTree Hilton Breakfast Buffet which includes fresh fruit, yogurt, assorted baked goods, cereal, pancakes, scrambled eggs, oatmeal, bacon, sausage, breakfast potatoes, coffee, assorted teas, juice and milk.

Morning: Travel with your instructor to the Valley of Fire. Explore the unique formations and view fascinating petroglyphs, including Mouse's Tank, officially known as Petroglyph Canyon. It is located in a rather unique position between two canyons of different elevations. Thus one side faces a sheer cliff of about 50 feet and the other side is a half mile long box canyon. It is named 'The Mouse's Tank' because an alleged Southern Paiute Indian renegade named 'Little Mouse' hid out there in the 1890's.

Lunch: Box Lunch at Mouse's Tank picnic area. Enjoy a brown bag lecture on Geology over lunch.

Afternoon: Enjoy the brilliant landscape with our instructor on short hikes/walks to include White Dome. Mohave Desert Ecology Lecture on the bus.

Dinner: Buffet Dinner at Bellagio Hotel. Ranked top buffet in Las Vegas.

Evening: Free time to explore or take in a Las Vegas show.

DAY
3
Flat water float on the Colorado River, Hoover Dam's Center
Las Vegas, NV
B,L,D
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Las Vegas

Breakfast: 6:30 to 8:00 am - DoubleTree Hilton Breakfast Buffet which includes fresh fruit, yogurt, assorted baked goods, cereal, pancakes, scrambled eggs, oatmeal, bacon, sausage, breakfast potatoes, coffee, assorted teas, juice and milk.

Morning: 8:00 am - Depart for Hoover Dam & Black Canyon. Embark on the Black Canyon Raft Tour which departs from a restricted-access vantage point exclusive to Black Canyon raft tours. From here board a raft for a trip downstream, through spectacular and historic Black Canyon with a beach stop for lunch before arriving at Willow Beach Marina - on the northern reaches of Lake Mohave.

Lunch: Lunch on the banks of the Colorado river.

Afternoon: Following lunch continue the float trip. After float trip visit the Hoover Dam visitor center to learn more about this engineering marvel. Return to hotel

Dinner: Dinner at a Las Vegas Restaurant.

Evening: Free time

DAY
4
Death Valley National Park, Bad Water Basin, Borax Museum
Death Valley National Park
B,L
Furnace Creek Ranch

Activity note: Badwater Basin is a short easy walk of less than a mile.

Breakfast: 6:30 to 7:45 am - DoubleTree Hilton Breakfast Buffet which includes fresh fruit, yogurt, assorted baked goods, cereal, pancakes, scrambled eggs, oatmeal, bacon, sausage, breakfast potatoes, coffee, assorted teas, juice and milk.

Morning: Check out and have luggage out to the bus by 8:00 am. Depart for Death Valley National Park. Learn about the history of Death Valley at the Furnace Creek Visitor Center and explore Ashford Mill ruins.

Lunch: Box lunch at Ashford Mill with a brown bag lecture on the history of mining in Death Valley.

Afternoon: Explore Badwater Basin, noted as the lowest point in North America with an elevation of 282 feet below sea level. Check into hotel.

Dinner: Dinner at Furnace Creek's 49'er Cafe.

Evening: Optional Death Valley Evening Ranger Programs.

DAY
5
Ubehebe Crater, Stovepipe Wells, Mesquite Sand Dunes
Death Valley National Park
B,L,D
Furnace Creek Ranch

Activity note: Ubehebe Crater's rim is a short walk from the parking lot, but some may opt to hike the 2 mile circumference around the rim. Mesquite Sand Dunes is a 1-2 mile hike.

Breakfast: 6:30 to 7:45 am - Furnace Creek Ranch Breakfast Buffet includes fresh fruit, yogurt, hot & cold cereal, eggs, bacon, sausage, ham, roasted potatoes, biscuits & gravy, toast, muffins, pastries, coffee, tea, milk and assorted juices.

Morning: 8:00 am - Depart for Ubehebe Crater a large volcanic crater 600 feet deep and 1/2 mile across.

Lunch: Lunch at Stovepipe Wells Bar & Grill

Afternoon: After lunch visit the Mesquite Sand Dunes. Mohave Desert Ecology: Flora & Fauna presentation by our instructor.

Dinner: Dinner at Wrangler's Steakhouse.

Evening: Board bus and depart for Star Gazing at Zabriskie Point. Our instructor will present a short Astronomy lecture and then we'll view the stars. Death Valley National Park harbors some of the darkest night skies in the world. The International Dark-Sky Association has designated Death Valley National Park as a "Gold Award Dark Sky Park". (http://www.darksky.org/night-sky-conservation/dark-sky-parks)

DAY
6
Golden Canyon, Ventifact Ridge, Borax Works, Zabriskie Point
Death Valley National Park
B,L,D
Furnace Creek Ranch

Breakfast: 6:30 to 7:45 am - Furnace Creek Ranch Breakfast Buffet includes fresh fruit, yogurt, hot & cold cereal, eggs, bacon, sausage, ham, roasted potatoes, biscuits & gravy, toast, muffins, pastries, coffee, tea, milk and assorted juices.

Morning: Depart for exploration of Golden Canyon. This hike gives you a great view of the unique beauty Death Valley has to offer. It has gaping canyons, huge boulders, waves of plant less rock and even a large red rock called the Red Cathedral. It is also the site where different parts of the original Star Wars movies were filmed. Continue on to visit Ventifact Ridge where high velocity wind laden with grit sweeps up the Death Valley floor and strikes the exposed rocks creating amazing rock sculptures.

Lunch: Buffet lunch at Wranglers.

Afternoon: Learn about the fascinating human history, 20-mule teams, and Harmony Borax Works. Visit Zabriskie Point. Mohave Desert Ecology: Mammals & Reptiles presentation by our instructor.

Dinner: Closing Dinner at Furnace Creek Inn. The Inn Dining Room offers fine dining with stunning views of the desert salt pans and the majestic Panamint Mountains. The Dining Room proudly serves an eclectic menu incorporating classical, continental, southwestern and pacific-rim influences. Please note that the dress code for dinner is “resort attire.” T-shirts or tank tops are not appropriate.

Evening: Free time to enjoy final night in Death Valley.

DAY
7
Depart for Las Vegas, Program Concludes
Las Vegas, NV
B

Breakfast: 6:30 to 7:45 am - Furnace Creek Ranch Breakfast Buffet includes fresh fruit, yogurt, hot & cold cereal, eggs, bacon, sausage, ham, roasted potatoes, biscuits & gravy, toast, muffins, pastries, coffee, tea, milk and assorted juices.

Morning: 7:45 am - Check out and bring luggage to bus. Depart for Las Vegas, arriving Las Vegas Airport at 11:30 am.






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