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Living In A Van

Old 11-02-23, 02:34 PM
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Living In A Van

What do I do with my van while riding around Death Valley? Unfortunately, I may have to leave some items of little value in there.
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Old 11-02-23, 03:07 PM
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You could park it at one of the campgrounds. Easier than carrying it around with you.
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Old 11-02-23, 06:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Thulsadoom
You could park it at one of the campgrounds. Easier than carrying it around with you.
Any campground is a (relatively) safe and secure place for multi-day parking?
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Old 11-03-23, 07:28 AM
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Has the park reopened yet?

Anyhow, for a day ride, pick a parking lot. If you're going to be gone overnight or longer, talk to a ranger about where you could park, and how long you expect to be gone. They'll probably also want to know where you're going, so they have some idea of where to start looking for you if you're late. Unless it's peak season, allow a half hour for the talk -- those people get lonely sometimes!
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Old 11-03-23, 08:57 AM
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Originally Posted by venturi95
What do I do with my van while riding around Death Valley? Unfortunately, I may have to leave some items of little value in there.
If the items are of little value, why worry?
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Old 11-03-23, 09:19 AM
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Why this forum is ridiculous. Good question which theoretically a member can help with we get these kind of responses.

“Just let your van get broken into”.
“Leave it at a campground”.
“Is the Park open”
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Old 11-03-23, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Atlas Shrugged
Why this forum is ridiculous. Good question which theoretically a member can help with we get these kind of responses.

“Just let your van get broken into”.
“Leave it at a campground”.
“Is the Park open”
I mean, I figured the OP had already thought of solutions like parking at a Ranger Station or Visitor Center and checked with people that work there to see if parking overnight is OK.
So leaving it at a campground seems like a pretty reasonable 3rd option.

As for the first claim you mention, I assume that is in response to my first post in the thread. I dont think the OP should let their van get broken into, but it did seem odd that a question was asked about being concerned for things of little value.
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Old 11-03-23, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by venturi95
What do I do with my van while riding around Death Valley? Unfortunately, I may have to leave some items of little value in there.
park at the visitor center.

unless you're staying overnight or several days. in that case, in the campground.
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Old 11-03-23, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr
If the items are of little value, why worry?
Because someone will smash a window just to have a look at:
an old foam pad
an empty cooler
dirty laundry
$15 dollar sleeping bag

I prefer to leave the thing unlocked with nothing to steal except the spare and jack, the glove box left open and empty sends a message to thieves,
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Old 11-03-23, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by pdlamb
Has the park reopened yet?
Death Valley reopens after flooding in August closed the park (msn.com)
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Old 11-04-23, 06:41 AM
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This is the touring forum, I assume you are planning to park it overnight.

If it is a camper van and if the park is one where it is hard to get one of the limited camping spots, if they see a camper van parked overnight, they might assume the owner is illegibly camping in a parking lot. I would call the park and ask them instead of asking here. Even if it is a minivan that looks more like a car than a camper, I still would just call them.
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Old 11-04-23, 06:43 AM
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Ask a park ranger. Anyway, people leave unattended vehicles in national parks all the time. What are you so worried about?
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Old 11-04-23, 06:29 PM
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I am talking about parking for multiple days, I thought that was obvious, but I was wrong, sorry.
I have never been to Death Valley National Park. I don't know anyone who has been to Death Valley, Park or otherwise.
Asking for advise once I've arrived - while perfectly reasonable - seems like sketchy planning to me for this trip.


Originally Posted by axolotl
Ask a park ranger. Anyway, people leave unattended vehicles in national parks all the time. What are you so worried about?
^ Winner of my least favorite reply.
What are you so worried about? I'm going to let you think about that for a bit. Hint: It has a lot to do with where you park!
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Old 11-04-23, 07:28 PM
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The solution is obvious. I'm going to let you think about that for a bit.

Actually, you can think about that forever, because you are astonishingly rude.
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Old 11-04-23, 08:41 PM
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Originally Posted by venturi95
Asking for advise once I've arrived[...]
Contact via email. Works well
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Old 11-04-23, 09:46 PM
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make a reservation at furnace creek campground.

https://www.recreation.gov/camping/campgrounds/232496
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Old 11-05-23, 02:19 AM
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Originally Posted by pdlamb
Has the park reopened yet?

Anyhow, for a day ride, pick a parking lot. If you're going to be gone overnight or longer, talk to a ranger about where you could park, and how long you expect to be gone. They'll probably also want to know where you're going.
+1

The NPS web site has a phone number I would call in advance or send email once I am pretty firm with my plans. Also note The Death Valley web site has a "notice" Death Valley partially reopened October 15th but many roads are still closed - https://www.nps.gov/deva/planyourvis...ss-permits.htm. There is a map of roads still closed to motor vehicles.

Death Valley is a huge park. While "reopened", it appears there are currently a large number of roads still damaged and closed to vehicles (though not bicycles) so there is a limited set of corridors you can drive.

The reason I would call in advance isn't so much to find an answer to the "where do I park" question but to initiate a protocol where I follow the rules and NPS has knowledge of "why is this random van parked at X...". I don't expect them to search if I'm overdue but this conversation also gets me additional knowledge on conditions and guidelines such as recommended Backcountry permits. I wouldn't bother for a day trip. So I might ask about parking but for me this is really more an excuse to start a conversation about some broader questions.

Also as the web page on Backcountry permits notes, I don't expect them to look for me if I am overdue in returning but it isn't a bad thing for someone to know my plans. (I think more often a scenario happens where a friend/relative calls the park service to report "x is missing" and the NPS wants to be helpful of what it knows; ).

You know your tolerance for leaving your van unattended for extended periods but I'll also note the environment at Death Valley is different than places close to populated areas.
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Old 11-05-23, 04:44 AM
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What's your plan for the tour? Are you planning on staying on the roads or are you venturing off pavement? How many days do you think it'll take? Where do you plan on staying while you're away from your van? Death Valley is big but it isn't THAT big. Some people ride through it in a day, Others might take a few. You'll get better responses if you give more information.
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Old 11-05-23, 06:09 AM
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I live in the northern part of the country, rarely experience triple digit temperatures so this is probably a very stupid question, but I will ask anyway.

If you are going to park a van at Death Valley in a hot sun for several days, are there any special precautions you need to take to prevent damage to any parts of your vehicle?
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Old 11-05-23, 02:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Thulsadoom
What's your plan for the tour? Are you planning on staying on the roads or are you venturing off pavement? How many days do you think it'll take? Where do you plan on staying while you're away from your van? Death Valley is big but it isn't THAT big. Some people ride through it in a day, Others might take a few. You'll get better responses if you give more information.
+1

Death Valley National Park is roughly the size of Connecticut. Crossing the narrow axis, e.g. Panamint Springs to Death Valley Junction is 85 miles.

Key question is the off-road one since that let's you get to a lot more of the park. Water becomes more of an issue for multi-day rides and current closure of some roads to motor vehicles (e.g. to Scotty's Castle) will make it tougher to place some water caches for those off-pavement rides to more remote parts of the park. Temperature can be an issue both because of heat and large variations between day/night & high/low places.
​​​
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Old 11-06-23, 01:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Thulsadoom
What's your plan for the tour? Are you planning on staying on the roads or are you venturing off pavement? How many days do you think it'll take? Where do you plan on staying while you're away from your van? Death Valley is big but it isn't THAT big. Some people ride through it in a day, Others might take a few. You'll get better responses if you give more information.
What is the plan here?

Are you planning to park/leave your van and then cycle tour through the park for several days, overnighting at various camping areas?
Or is the plan to ride around during the day, but sleep in the van each night at the same campground?
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Old 11-07-23, 04:55 AM
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What ever happened to going to the source, as suggested above for good reasons?
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Old 11-07-23, 05:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN
.... I would call the park and ask them instead of asking here.
Originally Posted by mev
...
The NPS web site has a phone number I would call in advance or send email once I am pretty firm with my plans. ...
....

Originally Posted by indyfabz
What ever happened to going to the source, as suggested above for good reasons?
This is Bike Forums, we have a tendency to over-analyze the situation.
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