More Arches in the Alabama Hills

Lone Pine, CA

The weather here in the Owens Valley of California has been windy and a bit cooler the last couple of days.  But today the sky was clear and the temperature was very comfortable so, despite a strong wind, we asked Dave and Sue to join us for another trip through the Alabama Hills looking for arches.  This is our second post on this topic so if you’re tired of looking at rocks and arches now would be a good time to click the “X” up on the right side of this tab in your browser.

Our first stop was in the Tuttle Creek Road Area, south of Whitney Portal Road.

Tuttle Creek Road Arch

Various levels of photography

Back side of Tuttle Creek Road Arch

Fish and Duck Arches

As we drove through the hills on Tuttle Creek Road we spotted a rock formation that looked like flowing lava that suddenly solidified.  A doorway built into the formation identified it as the Flowing Cave Miner’s Dugout.

Flow Cave Miner’s Dugout

We went in the doorway to explore but found the mine was only a few feet deep.  Guess they didn’t find much of value in the mine.

Tuttle Creek Road is paved, but after a bit we turned west on a dirt road to do some exploring.  It wasn’t long before the road crossed a flowing creek.  We sat by the creek and enjoyed lunch before crossing the water and continuing on the road.

The dirt road eventually intersected with Whitney Portal Road, where we turned west and drove a few miles to Movie Road, the main road through the Alabama Hills.  After about a mile we turned on to a dirt side road and meandered our way through the desert to an area known as the Beach Area, name for a formation that some say looks like a wave.  The area is packed with numerous arches.

The Wave

Surfer Arch No. 3

Two explorers searching for a pass through the mountains

Hitching Post Arch

Surfer Arch No. 2

Unknown Arch

Just a day in the (rock) park

Surfer Arch No. 1

Craggy Arch

We drove out to the end of a narrow side road and spotted a climber on the rock wall ahead of us.  A check of the map revealed the rock to be “The Loaf,” a popular climbing spot.

The Loaf (with a climber a third of the way up)

We were in this section searching for the area that was used for this bridge in the classic 1939 film Gunga Din.

The bridge from Gunga Din

Although the bridge was only about thirteen feet off the ground, the camera was placed directly on the ground and pointed up to shoot the scene, giving the illusion the bridge was very high up.  We located the site and found a motorhome parked in the spot.

We only have a few more days in Lone Pine but still have a couple of things we want to do before we continue our journey south.  More on that later . . .

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33 Responses to More Arches in the Alabama Hills

  1. Laurel says:

    That unknown arch should be called “John and Pam arch.” 🙂 Looks like another very fun adventure in the big kid playground!

  2. Nope, never get tired of photos of rocks and arches!

  3. I’m not tired of looking at arches! We watched “Gunga Din” a few nights ago and thanks to you I knew it was filmed in California!

  4. Gay says:

    I never get tired of seeing rocks and looking at your adventures. Love the “rock park” photo. So Pam, do you have a particular book that lists the arches and how to fine them or have you just used the Internet? Love it that Sue and Dave are sharing this time with you!

    • placestheygo says:

      Gay, we are using a book I discovered online but we found it in the Film Museum here in Lone Pine. It has been our Bible for these arch days. It is called Arches of the Alabama Hills by Orlyn Fordham. It is cheaper through Amazon, if you should think of purchasing it. We are having such a wonderful time traveling with Dave and Sue:)

  5. Bill says:

    Did you see any fish in that creek?

  6. Nancy says:

    I never grow tired of any of your posts. Rocks and adventures… Right up my alley!

  7. This looks like so much fun! You’re giving me all sorts of things to look for the next time we come through there. And…I can’t imagine getting tired of photos of rocks and arches!

    • placestheygo says:

      I was surprised by how much there is to do in this area of Lone Pine. We had extended our stay for a second week and were planning to add a third week, but the weather turns much cooler this coming week so we only extended two more days. Guess we’ll have to come back to finish the hikes and adventures!

  8. Janna says:

    Keep the hike tours coming!

  9. pmbweaver says:

    I clicked on the X but it wouldn’t go away…lol
    I really like the looks of Flowing Cave Miner’s Dugout. Pretty cool.
    Another fanatic hike. Your photos are outstanding. I love the wave photo.

  10. Ingrid says:

    You’re killing me with this scenery…. I must visit 🙂

    • placestheygo says:

      This is our first visit to Lone Pine and it is just amazingly beautiful. Sitting between two totally different mountain ranges gives us endless beauty. And the Alabama Hills are even more fun than I ever expected. Definitely don’t miss it! You and Al will love all the gorgeous boondocking spots in the Hills with nice, smooth dirt roads.

  11. What a great area you are exploring. We are enjoying the pictures.

  12. It sure really looks more fun searching those arches with Dave and Sue!
    I think the unknown arch should be called the Wright’s Arch, you look so cool framed by it.
    You certainly made those arches more interesting with your beautiful poses and faces in and around it.

  13. heyduke50 says:

    love the picture of the wave…

  14. Jodee Gravel says:

    Of course you found the name of the dugout – and fish too???? More great arches – such a fun way to explore the area! Love the photography levels 🙂 There was a rig parked in one of the other movie sites on our first day as well – at least this one gives a decent comparison for the real height of the bridge.

    • placestheygo says:

      Remember we have THE book!! It names all things:) We almost missed the fish and duck. If you don’t look up at just right the moment to see a little light, they don’t appear. See there was a fish in the Hills for Bill!!! Not sure I would want to be in the Gunga Din Bridge site since it was on the basic map everyone picks up!

  15. Sherry says:

    Too funny the motor home. Probably as tall as the bridge. Never too many rocks. Never too many arches. So glad you introduced me to the Alabama Hills and the book you are using. I really love the picture of what looks like “eyeglasses arch” to me with those cute faces peeking through.

  16. LuAnn says:

    You four did an amazing job of finding arches. We know from experience how difficult it is to find some of them.

    • placestheygo says:

      We never would have found so many “arches” had it not been for the book and its maps. Just having coordinates would have been difficult but with the maps we knew exactly where we needed to be. Each “arch” was flagged in its location. The author also gave the coordinates, as well as, a photo of the arch. It made for fun days climbing all around the boulders:)

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