How To Travel The Phinney Canyon Road

Phinney Canyon Road is a very exciting desert drive located in Nye County, in the U.S. state of Nevada. High-clearance vehicle required first 21 miles, 4x4 required beyond. It’s one of the challenging Backcountry roads in the Death Valley National Park.

Phinney Canyon Road

How long is the Phinney Canyon Road?

Located in the Grapevine mountains, within the Death Valley National Park, the road is totally unpaved. It’s 37km (23 miles) long. The route starts 11.7 miles north of Beatty on Highway 95, forking towards Strozzi Ranch on the left and to Phinney Canyon on the right. It leads to Phinney Canyon. It is navigable for most of the way with a vehicle having reasonable clearance but the last stretch of the road, however, requires a high clearance vehicle with four wheel drive low range capability and a skilled driver to navigate. At one point, there is a gigantic boulder on the roadbed, the size of an engine compartment, necessitating a careful drive-around.

Is the Phinney Canyon Road scenic?

This is a remarkable road trip. For the most up-to-date information on road conditions, visit Death Valley’s website at If you dare to take the risk and travel along this dusty and bumpy route, then make sure to be driven by someone who has experience of the road. After entering Phinney Canyon, the road winds through pinyon pine woodlands, offering travelers stunning views of the Grapevine Mountains high country and glimpses of the Sierra Nevada Range. This trail passes through remote areas, so you need to be prepared. Due to frequent flooding in the area, road conditions often vary throughout the park.
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