What can you expect to see on your Highway 395 road trip?
Often referred to as California’s “mother road,” Highway 395 is a pretty route that starts in southern California all the way to Canada. Our July road trip started in Phoenix, so we caught Highway 395 just outside of Victorville, California to Reno, Nevada stopping at sights along the way.
There are more than 40 stops you can take along the way, so we have plenty more to see on our next trip. For this part of our road trip we stopped at four main sites.
Lone Ranger Canyon and Alabama Hills
Highway 395 is actually quite beautiful not in the same way as a coastal trip, but the rock formations are stunning. While driving you really can’t miss the Canyons and unique formations of Alabama Hills.
Manzanar Historic Site
This site was referred to as a War Relocation Center for Japanese immigrants from 1942-1945. More than 10,000 people were confined here at that time. The historic site has a small museum to learn more about this dark part of American History. Read More…
There are scenic views of the mountains in between stops along Highway 395
This interesting lake is mostly salt and is high in alkalinity. Calcium carbonate towers are formed in the lake from calcium rich spring water that bubbles up from the bottom of the lake. It was rainy and muddy by the time we reached the lake. The pictures I have do not do the area justice. It was raining when we arrived, so I did not hike closer to the formations.
Bodie State Park
The rain started to subside by the time we reached Bodie State Park. Although the clouds remained pretty ominous. Bodie State Park is one of the best preserved ghost towns in the United States. In 1880 this gold-mining town had nearly 10,000 inhabitants.
This ghost town is an actual town with over 100 buildings still standing, so you can really get a good sense of what it was like to live and work here in the late 1800’s. More than 70 million dollars worth of gold were mined in these hills.
Exploring you’ll find that the furnishings and everyday belongings were abandoned almost as if the original owners left meaning to return someday. To see the whole ghost town you will do quite a bit of walking. You can see houses, a church, stores, the remains of the bank, restaurants and saloons. Read More….
From here Highway 395 curves and follows West Walker River.
We ended the first part of our Highway 395 road trip in Lake Tahoe. After a few days we continued up Highway 395 to Reno, Nevada.