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Scotty's Castle
Hiking Around Las Vegas, Death Valley National Park
Scottys Castle
Scotty's Castle


Scotty's Castle, actually the Death Valley Ranch, is an unexpected sight in the remote desert of eastern California. Either an aberration or the best example of 1930s Spanish style construction in Death Valley, the Castle is a testament to the ingenuity and character of the people who built it. The National Park Service now gives tours of the facility ($15 per adult), bringing back to life Death Valley Scotty (flamboyant cowboy entertainer), Albert Johnson (wealthy matron), and Bessie Johnson (wife and fervent preacher). The area also make a good stop for a picnic and a bit of birdwatching. For more history, see the NPS website.

Link to map.

Scotty's Castle

Watch Out

Other than the standard warnings about hiking in the desert, ... this area is about as safe as it gets if you stay on the road and walkways.

While out, please respect the land and the other people out there, and try to Leave No Trace of your passage. Also, this is a short hike, so just bring what you need of the 10 Essentials. For those who wander beyond the paved areas, the walk goes into the Death Valley Wilderness Area, so pay particular attention to respecting the land.

Scotty's Castle

Getting to Scotty's Castle

Scotty's Castle is located in the northern end of Death Valley National Park, about 3 hours northwest of Las Vegas.

From town, drive out to Death Valley. From the Furnace Creek Visitor Center (Table 1, Site 0712), drive north on Highway 190 for about 17.1 miles to Scotty's Castle Road (Site 0763). Turn right onto Scotty's Castle Road and drive north for 33.2 miles the Grapevine Entrance Station (Site 1047). Continue as if to exit the park (this is not really the boundary). Shortly, stay right at Ubehebe Road intersection (Site 0754). At about 3.0 miles past the entrance station, turn left into Scotty's Castle (Site 0747). Park here; this is the place. Restrooms are available.

Scotty's Castle Scotty's Castle
Scotty's Castle
Grounds with palm and other trees
Scotty's Castle
Birdwatching at Scotty's Castle
Scotty's Castle
Sunset: end of another day
more to come ...

Table 1. Highway Coordinates Based on GPS Data (NAD27; UTM Zone 11S). Download Highway GPS Waypoints (*.gpx) file.

Site Location UTM Easting UTM Northing Latitude (N) Longitude (W) Elevation (ft) Verified
0561 Scotty's Castle 469743 4098229 37.03160 117.34019 3,100 Yes
0712 Furnace Creek Visitor Center 512030 4034954 36.46159 116.86574 -186 Yes
0754 Scotty's Rd at Ubehebe Rd 467429 4094580 36.99863 117.36605 2,292 Yes
0763 Hwy 190 at Scotty Rd 496847 4054634 36.63908 117.03527 104 Yes
1047 Grapevine Entrance Station 467544 4094323 36.99632 117.36475 2,258 Yes

Happy Hiking! All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 130213

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