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Video: In Death Valley, the roads are good, bad, gorgeous and ugly

Video: In Death Valley, the roads are good, bad, gorgeous and ugly
In its 3.4 million acres, Death Valley National Park contains all sorts of roads, including the smooth stretch of uphill highway that these cyclists are on. (Christopher Reynolds / Los Angeles Times)

You get all kinds of roads in Death Valley National Park – twisty mountain routes, dead-straight stretches along the valley, smooth blacktop, washboard dirt, graded rocks and pebbles.

In the course of putting together a story, photos and video on the park – coming in January – photographer Mark Boster and I spent four days on every kind of road out there. Here's a minute-long video preview, featuring a talking Jeep (well, sort of), a rare rainstorm and a lot of bouncing pebbles.

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"A Minute Away" is a video series in which nothing much happens -- except you see the world, and hear it, and get a respite from workaday life. These are casual moments  – mostly just unpeopled scenery and natural sound from Machu Picchu, Red Square, the Yucatan, the Alamo, an Alaska float plane, the reading room of the New York Public Library. We add new ones weekly, and we've got more than 60 of them now, so if you'd prefer a full hour away…

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