Darwin Falls

Stovepipe Wells, California

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3 Reviews
4 out of 5
This short hike follows one of only four perennial streams in Death Valley National Park, leading through areas of riparian vegetation en route to a spectacular and rare desert waterfall. Darwin Falls is perhaps the most uncharacteristic locale in Death Valley National Park, its setting beyond the scope of most people’s perceptions of the quintessential desert landscape. Darwin Creek is one of the four perennial streams in the park’s more than three-million-acre expanse of desert valleys and mountains. Darwin Wash drains the westernmost reaches of the park, flowing from the volcanic tableland of Darwin Bench between the Inyo Mountains to the north and the Argus Range to the south. With its ribbon of riparian greenery and echoes of cascading water in a land that sees little rain, a walk through the shadowed hallway of Darwin Wash may be the most unique short day hike in the park.

Darwin Falls Professional Review and Guide

"This short hike follows one of only four perennial streams in Death Valley National Park, leading through areas of riparian vegetation en route to a spectacular and rare desert waterfall. Darwin Falls is perhaps the most uncharacteristic locale in Death Valley National Park, its setting beyond the scope of most people’s perceptions of the quintessential desert landscape. Darwin Creek is one of the four perennial streams in the park’s more than three-million-acre expanse of desert valleys and mountains. Darwin Wash drains the westernmost reaches of the park, flowing from the volcanic tableland of Darwin Bench between the Inyo Mountains to the north and the Argus Range to the south. With its ribbon of riparian greenery and echoes of cascading water in a land that sees little rain, a walk through the shadowed hallway of Darwin Wash may be the most unique short day hike in the park."

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Stovepipe Wells
Distance: 2
Elevation Gain: 280 feet
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Skill Level: Easy
Duration: 1 hour
Season: Best October through May
Trailhead Elevation: 2,490 feet
Top Elevation: 2,770 feet
Local Contacts: Death Valley National Park
Local Maps: USGS Darwin

Darwin Falls Reviews

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3/16/2010
Well worth doing. Upper Darwin Falls, in particular, are incredibly scenic. However, it requires some scrambling to get past the lower falls, below which you can't even catch a glimpse of what's above...
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10/9/2005
A very different type of activity to do while in Death Valley. We never expected to see so much water while in the desert. A very fun hike up the creek. I especially liked climbing up and over things and going through the water. The falls and swimming hole are a beautiful sight at the end of the trail. If only the water had been warmer! If you have 4x4, make sure to continue up the road over the mts. and into Darwin Wash...there are a few cool remains of what used to be a mining town.
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Comments
3/20/2005
Great for a quick hike. A lot of geologic features as well. Cool, shady areas for most of hike except for the beginning potion along (at the time) a dry stream bed. Falls themselves are very impressive, especially in the type of environment they lie in.
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