California inspection stations : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

First of all, Many thanks for all the answers to my recently question about 4x10 lens. Appreciated.

Here is one more, quite off optic, yet a little related to LF :

Have a chance to be in Las vegas soon and am thinking visit Death Valley and/or Alabma Hills ... while checking map to find a good route, I see there are inspection stations on highway once you enter California ...

What is it about ? I never saw inspection stations on highway in the state of Ohio. Does it means I have to have my car inspected for safe driving ? Or, they will search my car ? if that so, would the "strange" LF camera cause some problems? how you 'effectively' explan to them ?(and more importantly, sheet film- would they open film boxs? )

Sorry for such a stupid question, as a foreign guest , this is confusing. Would appreciate some explanation so I can have a nice trip :-)

Regards, C.J.

-- C.J. Wong (, March 12, 2002


Response to off topic, but

Agricultural inspection only...

Don't bring fresh fruit or vegetables into California. If they find an apple core they may even make you dump that...

-- Per Volquartz (, March 12, 2002.

Response to off topic, but


California is an argricultural state, and we protect our fruits and vegitables. The inspectors will politely ask you if you are bringing any fruit or vegitables into the state. If you have any produce, please do declare it. They may or may not ask you to dispose of it, depending on what it is.

I once claimed an apple that I had, and the inspector told me I couldn't bring it in. I said, "Its my lunch, can I eat it?". He said, "If I see you eating it, I can let you go through".

I took a bite, and he waved me on...

Good luck with the photos.

-- Douglas Gould (, March 12, 2002.

Response to off topic, but

Truckers call it "the bug station." Dialogue goes like this:

"Hi, where are you coming from?" [i.e. are you from a state with lots of pests?] "Do you have any fruits or vegetables?" If you say no, they give you a welcome to California brochure and you're on your way. If you have obvious folliage sitting next to you in the car or say yes, you hand it over (depending on what it is) and it goes in the trash can they have right there. There's another one on I5 in No. California, but it has a better view.

-- Kevin Crisp (, March 12, 2002.

Response to off topic, but

Having just returned from a California road trip, I should add that they're also shepharding vehicles through inspection stations manned by Border Patrol agents. I was never stopped, they just peered into my truck as I slowly rolled by, looking for illegal aliens hiding in the back seat.

-- Todd Caudle (, March 12, 2002.

Response to off topic, but


If you are driving from Las Vegas to Death Valley you will not be passing an inspection station. The route from Vegas takes you through the town of Pahrump, Nevada and from there either through Shoshone, Ca or Death Valley Junction, Ca. The Death Valley Junction route is the shortest and can have you at Furnace Creek in under 2 hours. The is a longer route that would take you north from Las Vegas to Beatty and Rhyolite, NV. Rhyolite is a ghost town that Ron Wisner has photographed extensively. That trip would take about 3 hours to enter the Valley. If you need any directions on how you want to go feel free to email me directly.

My vote would be to go to Death Valley Junction which is an incredible photo opportunity itself.

Good Travels

-- Kevin (, March 12, 2002.

Response to off topic, but

I've been to DV six times and highly recommend it. It is a rather large park and so you could never expect to see it all in one visit. I find many of the sights just outside the park as interesting as DV itself. The Alabama Hills, Lone Pine, Rhyolite, DV Junction are all rich with shooting opportunities. Feel free to visit my website and look at the DV portfolio for some idea of what you might see. Don't forget Darwin Falls in the Panamints. This is well worth the trouble, just keep an alert ear for rattlers.

-- Robert A. Zeichner (, March 12, 2002.

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