The Artist's Drive to Artist's Palette is a beautiful 9-mile drive that really showcases the splendor of the Amargosa Mountains. This paved road resembles a rollercoaster ride as there are many narrow winding twists and dips as the route cuts through the foothills. For this reason, trailers or vehicles over 25 feet are not permitted.
This one-way road begins by ascending the mountainside, and you'll get some fantastic views of Badwater Basin as it gains elevation. Eventually the road levels off somewhat and then follows the contours of the mountain. There are plenty of places to pull off of the road to take in the scenery or snap a few photographs.
The main point of interest on this drive is the Artist's Palette. This is a multicolored hillside where volcanic ash and minerals were deposited millions of years ago. Time, rain, and heat have changed the minerals into different color tones, giving the area a palette-like appearance. Here you will find a small parking lot, a restroom, and large groups of people. Death Valley is a free hike area, so don't be afraid to walk up and get an even closer look for yourself. It's just a few hundred feet from the parking area and it is well-worth the extra effort! This is a must-see adventure if you plan on visiting Death Valley National Park.