Lone Pine, California : A Gorgeous Town In The Mountains

Serendipity plays a huge part in traveling, and perhaps that’s what leaves you with a good feeling after a travel. We discovered Lone Pine, California, out of sheer good luck. From Los Angeles we wanted to visit the Death Valley National Park. After much searching, we couldn’t find any place inside the park, since everything was booked out for another couple of months. The nearest available location was Lone Pine, 100 miles away from the park center. We booked it, because we had no choice and also because we felt we could cover this 100 miles distance in about 1.5 plus hours. And it turned out to be a great decision.

A tiny town very close to Alabama Hills and Mount Whitney, which is the highest peak in the USA, Lone Pine has been inhabited by the Paiute Native Indian people since prehistoric times. Over the time it developed into a tiny town, but in 1920, the town’s history was dramatically altered when the silent movie ‘The Roundup’ was shot here. A typical classic ‘western’ looking town, it soon became the shooting destination for many more movies like ‘Riders Of the Purple Sage’ and many, many others including ‘Star Trek V – The Final Frontier’ and ‘The Gladiator’. In fact The Lone Pine Museum Of Western Film History, set up by Beverly and Jim Rogers, highlights the town’s frquent appearances in Hollywood.

A walk through the town reveals many stunning houses, gorgeous deep blue skies, and a few fabulous restaurants. Lone Pine is very small and almost all of it can be covered in a day walking. One of the must do things here is a drive onto the Whitney Portal Road, passing through the magnificent Alabama Hills.

We loved Lone Pine so much we were actually thankful not to have found a place to stay inside Death Valley National Park.

Barber Shop, Mexican restaurant, Lone Pine, California
Trying some classic Mexican – American food in Lone Pine
Mexican Restaurant, Lone Pine, California
Inside the Mexican – American diner. The food was amazing and so was the staff.
Lone Pine, California
Lone Pine is a classic ‘Western Town’ with rich blue skies, fluffy white clouds and snow covered Alabama Hills in the background.
Lone Pine, California.
This beautiful town can be covered on foot…
Lone Pine sky, California
It is incredible how crisp the sky is. Blue and crisp.
Lone Pine museum, California
A tiny town like this has so many museums.
Lone Pine sky, California.
Another rich shade of blue.
 Homes in Lone Pine, California
Beautiful homes stand basking in mountain light at Lone Pine, California
Lone Pine, California
And from in between homes one can catch a glimpse of Alabama Hills
Idyllic Lone Pine, California
Oh, to live here for longer, to read and write and paint here…
Lone Pine, California
I cant get over the beauty of these homes and the gorgeous skies.
Lone Pine, California
It is March, still technically winter. The trees haven’t yet regrown their leaves, but it probably looks better this way…
Film History Museum, Lone Pine, California
The Museum of Western Film History at Lone Pine is worth a visit.
Lone Pine, California
Alabama Hills, beautiful clouds, skies and a small field…
A typical lane in Lone Pine, California.
A typical lane in Lone Pine, California.
Lone Pine, California
This idyllic little town is the right place to come and unwind.
House, Lone Pine, California
A small but cozy home basks in the sun and dappled light of a gorgeous old tree.
Whitney Portal Road, California
We took a small drive to Alabama Hills via the Whitney Portal Road. The beauty of this area has to be experienced.
Whitney Portal Road, California
Wildflowers abound the stretches on Whitney Portal Road, California
Whitney Portal Road, California
And native cactii species… This area is a kind of a high altitude desert.
Whitney Portal Road, California
Towards the beginning of the drive into Alabama Hills are these gorgeous rocky hills.
Whitney Portal Road, California
These rocks and boulders spread over a vast area, giving this land a unique look.
Whitney Portal Road, California
And looking down into the somewhat not very big ravine, we can see a stream running through.
Whitney Portal Road, California
Closer to the mountains, the road was blocked because of snow. We had to turn around, but every inch of this drive is mesmerising! And there are bear warning signs closer to the top.
Alabama Hills, Lone Pine, California
We stayed at the Comfort Inn on the highway running through Lone Pine. A very warm and comfortable stay, the staff are amazing and they have a decent breakfast too! This is the view of the Alabama Hills from our room in the crack of dawn.
Comfort Inn, Lone Pine, California
A stay at Comfort Inn, Lone Pine is very much recommended. Clean and dry rooms, warm staff, good breakfast, fantastic location and they even have a fabulous laundromat.
Lone Pine, California.
This is the view towards the Death Valley National Park from our hotel. Every night as we parked the car, we saw wild Hares foraging in these meadows.
Mt Whitney Golf Club, Lone Pine, California
Right opposite our hotel was this Mount Whitney Golf Club.
Visitor Center, Death Valley National Park
The Death Valley National Park at Lone Pine is just a couple of minutes from Comfort Inn, Lone Pine. We highly recommend visiting this center to learn more about the park and to maximise your visit.

How to Reach: Lone Pine is roughly 355 miles from San Francisco by road in the summers. In the colder months the high mountain passes of Yosemite National Park that this road drives through are shut. So you will then have to drive via the south of Yosemite National Park, in a roughly 450 mile drive. Its closer from Los Angeles, at around 230 miles.

Where To Stay: Although there are plenty of motels here, we preferred staying at the Comfort Inn.

What to Do: Go for a walk  in the town. Visit the Lone Pine Film History Museum. There is another museum in the town. Go for a walk/run/cycle/drive the Whitney Portal Road.

Where to eat in Lone Pine : There are some fabulous restaurants and cafes in this tiny town. Try Seasons Restaurant, Alabama Hills Cafe, Bonanza Mexican, The Grill, Totem Cafe, Mt Whitney Restaurant amongst others.

2 thoughts on “Lone Pine, California : A Gorgeous Town In The Mountains”

  1. Such a beautiful town! It is indeed serendipitous moments like this that makes a travel even more memorable. That and good weather, of course. Did you meet any other visitors to the National Park who had to stay in Lone Pine for the same reason?

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