113-year-old landmark in Death Valley ruined by off-roader winching themself free

  • A salt tram tower in a historic landmark in Death Valley
  • Someone tore it off while trying to save themselves
  • It was an off-roader who used it as an anchor to winch themselves out

Published on Jun 11, 2024 at 4:38 PM (UTC+4)
by Siddharth Dudeja

Last updated on Jun 13, 2024 at 6:26 PM (UTC+4)
Edited by Tom Wood

Someone just destroyed a 113-year-old historic landmark situated in Death Valley National Park’s Saline Valley while trying to rescue their off-road vehicle.

Death Valley is an iconic place that attracts countless visitors every year, including off-road enthusiasts.

But it seems that one of the travelers got into trouble and used the famous salt tram tower as an anchor to pull their vehicle.

We don’t know who did it — and neither did the National Park Service (NPS), until a month ago.

READ MORE: People stood confused as a Tesla Cybertruck pulled into a gas station

The individual came forward to turn themself in

Death Valley has an incredible road at its heart, which stretches straight for a massive 125 miles (200 km) without having any turns.

Many enthusiasts visit the area because of this, plus the remote wilderness areas that are ideal for off-roading.

The NPS sent out a release to gain more information about the landmark’s destruction.

They anticipated the time of the incident to have occurred between April 1 and April 24 of this year.

After they sent out the press release with a phone number, the individual responsible for the destruction turned themself in by calling the tip line.

“We are grateful to the dozens of people who reached out to the park with information and for all the statements of support that we received from people who care about this place and its cultural resources,” acting Superintendent Elizabeth Ibañez at the NPS said.

The statement added, “Although we would certainly prefer that this damage hadn’t happened, we are glad that the person who did this ultimately took responsibility for their actions and came forward.”

The park didn’t disclose any other information about the person, but we do know they did it during a ‘time of desperation’ while being deeply stuck in the mud.

Moreover, the person also mentioned that they didn’t intend to harm such a historic landmark.

They had to do something to get out of the situation, and the 113-year-old salt tram tower seemed like the only option.

That checks out because, according to the NPS, cell coverage isn’t great in remote wilderness areas.

They also recommend carrying a satellite-based communications device in cases of emergency like this.

Landmarks in the middle of nowhere aren’t something new, just like this fake Prada store in Texas.

NPS will try to restore the Death Valley landmark

But what’s done is done, so what about what happens next?

Well, the NPS is actively searching for ways to restore Tram Tower #1 by first assessing the damage.

You see, when the individual used it as an anchor, it didn’t end well.

The salt tram tower, along with its concrete foundation, was completely torn off the ground.

After they look at the damage done, the NPS will come up with a plan to restore the salt tram.

Finally, they also want fans of the landmark to stay calm and not attempt to restore it themselves.

# Tags - Cars, Lifestyle, Off-road


Siddharth Dudeja

Siddharth is a tech nerd with a secret love of all things cars. He has been writing for a few years now, and on his free time you would find him gaming when he's not procrastinating.