Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times
Distance: 270 miles one-way.
This barren patch of desert on Death Valley that's littered with broken bottles and abandoned mine shafts is the site of one of the most bizarre deaths in the old West. An angry lynch mob hanged and then buried a down-on-his-luck saloon keeper named Joe Hooch Simpson after he killed the town banker in 1908. But when a Los Angeles Times reporter showed up a few days later to snap a photo, locals unearthed Hooch and strung him up again for the snapshot. While he was above ground, a local doctor decided to lob off Hoochs head to test it for syphilis. Now a headless Hooch reportedly haunts the site of Skidoo in the heart of Death Valley.
-- Hugo Martin
For more information, call the Death Valley National Park at (760) 786-3200 or go to www.nps.gov/deva/.