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Slate Range Crossing Area Map

The main sites of interest
in this area are:
  1. Water Canyon
  2. McDermott Area
  3. China Road
  4. Quarry
  5. Panamint Valley
Access to this area is provided via a number of dirt roads. There are several dirt roads east of the mouth of Water Canyon. China Road takes off from the highway at Slate Range Crossing and drops into the the valley to the east. Dirt roads from the Panamint side provide access to Area E. Also Quarry Road provides access to the Quarry and to the trail that runs along the crest of the Slates through this region. The McDermott area is accessed from dirt roads that reach the highway just south of Slate Range Crossing.

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Slate Range Crossing

A dirt road often referred to as "China Road" exists just east of the highway which descends into Panamint Valley. This dirt road was replaced by the paved highway around 1949 according to O. N. Cole. The dirt road was originally built in the 1800's and was improved by Chinese craftsmen under the directon of Remi Nadeau and, subsequently, the Meyersteins. At the bottom of the grade remnants of the Chinese stonemasons' camp are still visible. Doc Cole wrote an article entitled "Desert Freight Trail" about this trail which appeared in the February 1977 edition of Desert magazine.

Continuing a mile or two down into the valley along China Road (taking the east fork of the road), one comes to a quarry area. This is referred to as the Panamint Valley Quarry in the trip pictures for this section. The rock is a deep red at this site.