Bowling Alley

Bowling Alley

Bowling Alley Proposed Wilderness Addition

Photo by John Dittli
(Click here to download a Fact Sheet on the Bowling Alley Proposed Wilderness Addition and click here here for a nap)

The California Desert Conservation and Recreation Act proposes to add 32,520 acres in the Bowling Alley Wilderness Study Area to the national wilderness protection system.

On the extreme southern boundary of Death Valley National Park, there is a narrow strip of land between the Park and Fort Irwin known as the “Bowling Alley.” This remote area features rugged mountains and deep canyons, separated by open valleys, bajadas and pristine dry lake beds. To the north of the Bowling Alley is the proposed Axe Head wilderness addition. Together these wilderness additions will expand the value and connectivity among wild desert areas.

There is one permanent spring, Quail Spring, in this area. It provides a rich riparian area that attracts a variety of birds. Owl Hope Spring also provides intermittent water and a green oasis. Sparse rainfall may drain into Owl Lake or Lost Lake – dry lakes that see water just a few days a year, or not at all.

The geological history of the Bowling Alley dates back nearly two billion years, and the earliest human inhabitants appeared about 5,000 years ago. This vast, rugged terrain offers opportunities for solitude, primitive recreation and geological, archaeological and ecological research.