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First visit to Death Valley National Park, California in 1979.
Lens: MD 35 mm f/1.8 - MD 50-135 mm f/4 Camera: Minolta XE-7 Photo Location: California Aperture: F8 
Posted By: RICHARD L., 12-01-2022, 02:47 PM

Three Kodachrome 25 images of my journey through Death Valley in July 1979. Minolta XE-7 + MD 35 mm f/1,8 wide-angle and MD 50-135 mm f/4 zoom. My 1978 Ford F150 pick-up with a 351 V8 kept overheating when I was climbing hills. My radiator was not big enough to "survive" 125 degree F heat and I started using Mobil 1 synthetic motor oil only the next year in 1980. I had to stop and spend the day resting in the shade and drive only at night when temperature dropped to 105 deg F. The sky was exceptionally clear and I spent the evening admiring a myriad of stars I had never seen before.

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Last edited by RICHARD L.; 12-01-2022 at 02:52 PM.
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12-01-2022, 06:12 PM   #2
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Good shots, Richard. I don't think that I've driven through an area where the temperature outside would cause overheating of a car. Did they have special packages to handle the heat in 1979? If I ever drive through there, I'll keep that in mind.
12-02-2022, 04:28 AM   #3
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I returned to Death Valley in comparable temperature ranges in July or August 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018 and 2019 with Dodge Grand Caravans and these newer vehicles had no problem handling the heat. I use Mobil 1 synthetic motor oil, which helps a lot. I could use full A/C with my newest 2017 Caravan without any sign of overheating. The 2012 model behaved quite well also although it could not maintain the 60 degrees F air conditioning is supposed to provide but the Pentastar V6 didn't overheat either.


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12-02-2022, 05:40 PM   #4
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I had a Chevy Impala from about that time period and every time I went through Southern California, it would overheat.
Never have any problems now with the Fords or Toyotas I have recently driven in that area.
Great shots of Death Valley you got. Although I've been all around that area, I have never actually gone into that place.
Angky.

12-03-2022, 08:49 AM   #5
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I visited Death Valley several times, always with strange things happening every time. In 1998, they experienced a maximum temperature of 130 degrees F at the beginning of August, the day a Marathon was held in the Valley on a Sunday. Runners dropped like flies in such horrendous temperatures. They recommend you stay put, resting quietly in the shade, and drink plenty of water. My silver gray Mercury Villager van behaved brilliantly in such a high temp range.

In 2019, I was thinking of spending the night at the campground next to the Visitors Center. I set up for the night around 8h30 PM when it became dark but the temperature was still 125 degrees F and I had no A/C. I opened my back tailgate as well as my 2 sliding doors but to no avail. Then bats started bomb-diving incessantly on the metal roof of my Dodge Caravan. After 30 minutes of enduring this "torture", I got up, tidyed inside my van and drove out of Death Valley. I finished my night in the Parhump, NV Walmart parking lot where it was "only" 95 degrees F ...

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Last edited by RICHARD L.; 12-03-2022 at 01:08 PM.
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