Far in the upper corner of Death Valley National Park, laying next to the Last Chance Mountains that tower 4,000 feet above the valley floor, lie the Eureka Dunes reaching heights of 700 feet. The dunes are the highest in California and some of the highest in the United States.
There is campsite and parking lot once you arrive at the dunes. If you arrive in late afternoon or evening, it is suggested to camp or drive out of Death Valley to Little Pine since the one way road is difficult to see in the dark. Campfires and driving off road are prohibited to protect endangered plants living on the dunes. The hike to the summit is intense, especially in the heat. The steep elevation gain and soft hiking surface make this a challenging hike. Follow the footsteps up the dunes or to the ridge for the easiest and safest trip. Make sure to bring plenty of extra water.
The dunes are thought to have existed for 10,000 years. Due to the isolation of the dunes, there are five species endemic beetles and three plants unique to the Eureka Dunes along with an endangered species. The Eureka dunegrass grows on the higher slopes, the shining milkvetch is similar to the dunegrass and reflects excess light, and the Eureka Dunes evening primrose blooms at night to take advantage of moth pollinators. This is a fragile ecosystem, be respectful and careful not to damage the local plants and animals as you enjoy this amazing area.