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User's Guide to Beatty

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San Francisco
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for Death Valley Junction, Death Valley National Park
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User's Guide to Beatty

I posted this on the California forums for Death Valley and DV National Park, then thought I ought to put it here as well in case someone strays into Beatty.

I was in Beatty this past week during my DV trip. For people looking for the bare essentials, here is an update.

The Amargosa Toad has folded. That was a general store selling all kinds of stuff, including snacks, tools, desert art, clothes, etc., at the site of the old General Store which was actually a true grocery with gas station. The site, on 2nd Street (Hwy 95 south) is now vacant.

The 76 gas station and mini-mart, a long-time fixture, is now a Rebel station and still has gas and groceries. The other sort-of general store is Lost River Trading Co., also on 95 just south of Main. It doesn’t have much food, just a few snack and more general merchandise and Death Valley eccentricities.

The former Burro Inn, which closed in early 2006 and then began to undergo renovation, is still under renovation. It is supposed to become the Death Valley Inn, and is being transformed into a Spanish style villa with palm trees. It looks mostly finished, with only one piece of construction equipment on site when I was there, but no workers or work in sight. There are other lodging choices:

• Stagecoach Inn, a motel casino with restaurant and Death Valley Candy & Nut Co.

• Motel 6

• Phoenix Inn, a cluster of mobile homes

Exchange Club Motel. The historic Exchange Club had a casino and restaurant, which closed a couple of years ago. Now a hardware store is in that space.

El Portal Motel, on Main Street west of 95. This indie is my favorite place to stay in town.

• I think the Happy Burro Hostel is still running as well.

San Francisco
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for Death Valley Junction, Death Valley National Park
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1. Re: User's Guide to Beatty

I was in DV again this month and passed through Beatty, and thigns are pretty much the same. The former Burro Inn is still "under construction" and cordoned off. I don't know if they are trying to arrange financing or what, but there is little sign of actual work activity.

The other lodgings are still open, and my personal recommendation continues to be the El Portal. Thee Rebel gas and mini-mart, Ensenada Mexican restaurant, a couple of smaller cafe and bar establishments, and a Bank of America branch with a Versatel are also in Beatty.

If you are going to DV, be aware that the post offices there and in Beatty, Shoshone, and Pahrump are open only Monday-Friday--a huge disservice to travelers, especially those needing overseas postage. At least the bank has an outdoor Versatel so you aren't screwed if you arrive after hours.

Reno, Nevada
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2. Re: User's Guide to Beatty

Hi Frisco Roadrunner --

Just an update, based on my visit to Beatty last week:

1) The Happy Burro Inn is now owned by a couple who seem to be a lot more interested in getting plastered every night than renting out rooms. I had an interesting encounter with them on the evening of 9/21/08 and also spoke to a local who says that they are trying to sell liquor prior to actually receiving their liquor license for the Sourdough Saloon (next door to the Happy Burro Inn). So, I suggest that everyone just scratch the Happy Burro Hostel off their lists and I wish the current owners would remove the sign from the front of the building. They didn't seem to be aware of the fact that there were reviews of the Happy Burro posted all over the web.

2) I agree that the El Portal Motel would be a good place to stay in Beatty -- too bad the owners of the Happy Burro were too drunk to give me proper directions to it because I would have liked to have taken a dip in its pool. I followed the unhelpful directions to it that they gave me, and I ended up missing it by a few blocks so I ended up back across the street from the Happy Burro at the Exchange Motel because it was quite a bit cheaper than the Motel 6 which only had a smoking room to offer. Another local told me that the Stagecoach, the Motel 6, and the Exchange Motel are all owned by the same owners. Had I felt like splurging, I would have stayed at the Stagecoach Inn -- clearly the nicest setting in Beatty.

3) My original plan was to camp at Bailey's Hot Springs for a soak but it was dark when I arrived, and the thought of setting up my tent in the dark wasn't sitting well with me and I really needed a shower and a little time staring at the b___ [rhymes with cube but has been censored by TripAdvisor) tube. I hope to try Bailey's the next time I'm in Beatty.

4) Is it just me or is the artwork out at Rhyolite an inappropriate distraction?

Hope this helps ...

Santa Ana, CA
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3. Re: User's Guide to Beatty

This town has a County Sheriff who is clever, sharp, and knowledgeable. Watch the really low speed limit. There is only one stop sign in the middle of town. Come to a full stop before you reach the white line. Use your turn signal.

San Francisco
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for Death Valley Junction, Death Valley National Park
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4. Re: User's Guide to Beatty

In my entire driving life of maybe 40 years, I have gotten only one speeding ticket. Guess where.

San Diego...
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5. Re: User's Guide to Beatty

Totally agree about the speed limits. I was playing poker at the Stagecoach talking to locals about the town. And they even said that is a major money maker for the county sheriff.

So please when it drops from 70 to eventually 25 mph in town, watch the speed.

6. Re: User's Guide to Beatty

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