Getting to the tour
This Death Valley & Alabama Hills photography tour meets in Furnace Creek, Death Valley and disbands in Lone Pine, California. Participants are responsible for their transportation to and from the workshop.
We recommend flying into Las Vegas and renting a car from there. We recommend renting an SUV or crossover like a Subaru. It is an easy 2-hour drive from the Las Vegas airport to Furnace Creek. From Lone Pine, returning to Las Vegas takes approximately 4 hours.
Transportation during the tour
Unfortunately, due to a very annoying California state law, we are unable to provide transportation for this tour at this time. All participants are responsible for getting themselves to and from Death Valley and Lone Pine. We will organize carpools within these locations.
If you choose to pay the the lodging supplement you will have 7 nights of comfortable, private hotel accommodation during the tour. The first four nights are at the Furnace Creek Ranch in Death Valley. The final three nights are at the Best Western in Lone Pine. You may also book your own accommodation at these locations (or nearby). You are also welcome to camp if that is your style. After you have paid your deposit for the tour we will discuss the lodging options with you.
Death Valley & Alabama Hills Photography Tour Itinerary
Our itinerary is organized to visit some of the most spectacular locations in these two special areas. The tour is 8 days total, giving us tons of opportunities to shoot. We’ll set a relaxed pace on the trip, with emphasis on shoots during the golden hours of sunrise and sunset, with breaks in the middle of day for meals, optional side-trips, or transit between locations. Most of our locations are within a 30-60 minute drive. From Furnace Creek to Lone Pine is approximately a 2-hour drive along an incredibly scenic highway.
Day 1, Arrival Day. December 5th.
Arrive in Furnace Creek, Death Valley. Meet at our group’s hotel for orientation and introductions. We will plan to shoot sunset this night.
Days 2 – 5. December 6th – 9th.
We will spend the next three days and a morning getting deep into Death Valley. We will be exploring many iconic areas near Furnace Creek and Stovepipe Wells, along with off-the-beaten-path locations such as the Ibex Dunes, Lee Flat, Conglomerate Mesa, and more as conditions and time allows.
Days 5 – 7. December 9th – 11th.
After our final Death Valley adventure on the morning of the 9th, we will check out of the hotel and make the beautiful drive to Lone Pine. We will spend that evening and the next two full days seeing the best of what the Alabama Hills has to offer.
Day 8, Last Day and Departure. December 12th.
After a final morning shoot in the Alabama Hills or Owens Valley we will enjoy a last meal together before the workshop disbands.
December is one of the most exciting and dynamic times to photograph this corner of the globe. December brings winter storms to the area, greatly increasing our chances of seeing interesting light, fresh snow on the mountains, and even water in Death Valley’s parched deserts. In Death Valley you should expect warm days and cool nights, and in the Alabama Hills expect cool days and cold nights. Overall, temperatures could range from 75°F down to 25°F, so be prepared for a range of conditions. Expect wind (and possibly lenticular clouds) at any time in either place. 🙂
Who is this Photo Tour for?
Our Death Valley & Alabama Hills tour is for photographers who appreciate experiencing a wide array of landscapes and scenes. If you love intimate details of salt crystals and layers of colorful badlands as much as grand landscapes, then this trip is for you. There is such a wonderful range of subjects and scales to explore in these areas, and photographers open to all kinds of different shots will find great joy on this trip. This tour is open to photographers of all experience levels, from novice to experienced. In short, this tour is for anyone who wants to explore and photograph stunning scenery with a fun group of like-minded people. The trip is limited to 8 participants for a small, personal feel. And there are two leaders, giving the tour a 4-to-1 ratio.
What’s the difference between a photo tour and a workshop?
This is a photo tour, meaning that we are focused on getting you to the right places at the right times to create amazing images. We don’t have any classroom time, there are no dry lectures, and we don’t spend any time in front of the computer forcing you to learn the latest complicated processing techniques. This trip is about having the best possible experience in Death Valley and the Alabama Hills. That means in addition to shooting we are also enjoying meals together, learning the history of these areas, and allowing for down time so that you can stay rested and excited. This trip is FUN, not boot camp.
In the field your leaders are 100% available to you to answer questions, provide guidance and feedback, and give you ideas of how to approach your photography. The trip leaders will also be shooting their own photos so that you can see the scene through their eyes.