GPS Coordinates: 36.28597, -116.82611 (36°17’09.5″N 116°49’34.0″W)
History tells us that this place was named after a line in the 1934 National Park Services guide book to Death Valley National Park. This line read that “Only the devil could play golf” on this rough surface. Hence the name – Devil’s Golf Course. But, this certainly isn’t your typical golf course – with grassy knolls and ponds.
What you see here today is a vast area filled with sharp, jagged spires. This has formed as a result of continuous damage from wind and rain to the empty lake bed where Lake Manly once used to be. At one point, Lake Manly covered this valley with water rich in salts and minerals. When water along the basin started evaporating, the lake bed got exposed and also started eroding over the years.
If you listen carefully, you will hear tiny pop sounds from time to time. You hear these sounds because of the tiny salt crystals bursting. These salt crystals break as they expand and contract because of the extreme weather changes during the day.
Best Time to Visit / Photograph
Earlier in the day or later in the evening when the sun is not too bright and bit lower down the horizon.
Recommended Camera Gear
- Digital Camera with Ultra Wide or Normal to Mid-Range Zoom Lens
- Cable Shutter Release or Remote Shutter Release
- Steady Tripod
How to get there
Devil’s Golf Course can be reached from Badwater Road via a 1.3-mile gravel unpaved road. This path is closed during wet weather. You can drive a regular sedan to get to this spot but you must drive with caution.
Place to Stay
The nearest campsites are either in Furnace Creek or at Badwater Basin.
Pictorial Highlights from this place…