Nevada February 06, 2020
Nevada’s 365-Mile Death Drive Takes You Through Valleys, Mountains, And Everything In Between
One of the most exciting scenic drives in Nevada has the most unsettling name. The Death Drive may not
sound very promising at first glance. In fact, it sounds downright dangerous. However, those who brave this strangely named scenic road trip are in fact rewarded with some of the most spectacular destinations that Southern Nevada has to offer. Taking you through valleys, mountains, and everything in between, this road trip literally has its ups and downs. One thing is for sure, though. You’ll be utterly mesmerized from beginning to end.
Often referred to as the Death Drive, the scenic loop that takes drivers from Las Vegas to Death Valley and back is full of spectacular destinations. Although its name would have you thinking differently, this road trip is actually full of life.
You'll start this iconic road trip by driving west from Las Vegas on NV-159 W. This highway takes you through some of the region's most incredible landscapes, including the world-famous Red Rock Canyon NCA and the gorgeous Spring Mountain Ranch State Park. This stretch of the trip shows that there's SO much more to Las Vegas than The Strip.
You could spend days exploring the unique landscapes of this region, including iconic attractions like Pahrump Valley Winery and Ash Meadows National Wildlife. However, there's a lot more ground to cover, so continue onto the second stretch of this drive towards Death Valley.
Comprised of over three million acres, Death Valley National Park is one of the most extraordinary landscapes in the country. Despite its ominous name, it's here you'll find never-ending landscapes filled with colorful rock formations, canyons, sand dunes, and mountain peaks that loom thousands of feet over you.
Considered the largest national park outside of Alaska, you'll want to give yourself plenty of time to roam around. The Furnace Creek Visitors Center is a good place to start. Some of the park's most iconic spots include Artist's Palette Overlook, Zabriskie Point, and Scotty's Castle.
For the next leg of this road trip, you'll explore many of the unique attractions and beautiful landscapes located just outside of Death Valley. Hop onto NV-374 N towards Beatty and you'll come across the ghost town of Rhyolite. Abandoned a century ago, this town now offers visitors a small glimpse at the boomtown era that was so important to Nevada's statehood.
While you're here, don't forget to stop by the famous Goldwell Open Air Museum. This outdoor sculpture park is one of the strangest things you'll see in the Nevada desert, and it's become an iconic road trip destination for adventurers. Created by Belgian artists in the 1980s, it's definitely a highlight on the Death Drive.
Finally, you'll make the loop back towards Las Vegas by driving south on US-95 where you can complete the Death Drive on a high point—literally. Mount Charleston is a mountainous region that's rich with hiking trails and campgrounds. And at 11,916-feet above sea level, it proves that Southern Nevada's landscapes are much more diverse than you'd think.
Are you ready to take on this scenic road trip? It turns out the Death Drive is actually full of life! For more must-do road trips, take a look at this list of
The 10 Most Scenic Drives In Nevada.