The Amargosa River makes most of it’s long journey from the Nevada Test Site to Death Valley underground, but in a couple places the underlying geology forces its water to the surface. Here it cuts a beautiful canyon through the Sperry Hills, with the Avawatz Range looming behind. The riparian zone here supports thick vegetation and lots of animal life, and is the home of the Amargosa River pupfish, Cyprinodon nevadensis amargosae. The area also contains the beautiful and delicious China Ranch Date Farm, which I recommend both for hiking access and for date milkshakes.Below the date farm, the canyon is protected within the boundaries of the enormous Kingston Range Wilderness.
The Amargosa is already in low desert here, but it’s waters still have over 1,200 feet to descend as they curve northward to their final resting place 282 feet below sea level at the lowest point in North America.