Did Scotty’s Castle Survive the Flood?

Death Valley Scotty's castle

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Last week, record rains almost washed out what was left of Death Valley National Park, as it was still recovering from the record rains from last August.

After the last flood, the National Park Service and its staff from other National Parks quickly brought the park back to life and opened the roads and overlooks, one piece at a time. This time, they “think” they should have at least the main highway, CA190, open in three months. The timeline to open other roads and overlooks is indefinite.

Death Valley National park is still closed due to flood damage

How Much Rain?

On August 20, rains from tropical storm Hilary, dumped 2.2 inches (6 centimeters) of rain Aug. 20, roughly the amount of rainfall the park usually receives in a year.

This year’s rainfall broke its previous record of 1.7 inches (4 centimeters) in one day, set in August of last year.

Christopher Andriessen, a spokesperson with the California Department of Transportation, also known as Caltrans, stated that about 900 of the park’s nearly 1,400 miles (2,250 kilometers) of roads have been assessed.

Repair costs are estimated at $6 million, but only for one of the park’s main roads, State Route 190, and a small part of State Route 136.

Scotty’s Castle is Safe

What About Scotty’s Castle?

For my tour guests and online friends, the first question I started to get from them about the Death Valley floods was, “What About Scotty’s Castle?”

Answer: It’s still there, the floods missed the castle. Due to their work after the 2015 flood and the way the storms moved through the valley, Scotty’s Castle was spared any major damage.

Details: The popular Death Valley tourist attraction has been closed since the night of October 18, 2015, when Scotty’s Castle/Grape Vine Canyon received 2 3/4 inches (6.9 cm) of rain— a year’s worth of rain within a mere five hours. This followed a half-inch of rain the day before.

Recommnd: Scotty’s Castle Update (2021)

The rain and hail fell on the steep slopes of Grapevine Canyon and quickly caused a flash flood of mud and rocks headed towards Scotty’s Castle, flowing at an estimated 3,200 cubic feet per second.

It has been closed ever since as the park has been working on rebuilding the road to the castle and restoring damage to the structures. The castle is not expected to be open until late 2025.

Death Valley’s Scotty’s Castle: The Story Behind the Scenery
  • Used Book in Good Condition
  • Stanley W. Paher (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 48 Pages – 06/01/1997 (Publication Date) – KC Publications, Inc. (Publisher)


As much as we all love Death Valley and want to see it for ourselves, please let the professionals do their jobs. Stay safe, stay away until they give us the “ok” to start wandering back in!

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Last update on 2024-06-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API