I decided to group these two locations together into one, since they are very close to each other along the road to Badwater. Also these two places serve as a reminder to me that I have been visiting the park for over fifteen years now, and Death Valley has changed since I first visited.  Mushroom Rock used to be a very popular place to visit in Death Valley. It had its own parking area, where people could pull off and get their picture next to the famous rock, also known as the Devil's Throne. But tragically the rock has gotten smaller and smaller over the years, being broken down by abuse. For instance, I heard that an entire group of boy scouts stood on the rock for a photo once, which caused one of the breaks. Interestingly, when I picked up the new 2007 AAA Guide Map to Death Valley, I found that one of the changes was that they removed Mushroom Rock as one of the original 49 points of interest. Now there are only 48. But I still have the original, which says of Mushroom Rock: "This mass of old basalt has been eroded into its unusual shape by temperature extremes, water, rain, and wind-blown sand and salt."  Mars Hill is another location which used to be marked on park maps, but is no longer there. Mars Hill is located directly to the west of the end of Artists Drive, it is literally right across the street. Apparently it was given the name because the landscape is eerily similar to the landscape on Mars.
The remains of once proud Mushroom Rock, as seen alongside Badwater Road:
It's still worthwhile to stop off for a visit, in view of the historical significance:
View of Mushroom Rock which shows how close it is to the road:
Mushroom Rock is still partially standing tall:
As you can see with this picture of Silva standing tall on Mushroom Rock, the rock is still majestic.  In fact, it was even much bigger in the past than what you see in this picture:
The next two historical photos show you what Mushroom Rock once looked like, when it was also known as the Devil's Throne:
Mars Hill is a very short distance south of Mushroom Rock, also along Badwater Road:
Mars Hill definitely contains the same landscape which we have seen in photographs of Mars:
A close-up of the hill looking north towards Furnace Creek:
The next two photos give you an even closer view of the Martian landscape:
Looking down from Mars Hill to the Badwater Road and Artists Drive exit:
A close-up of one of the rocks on Mars Hill:
A group of people listening to a lecture by Dr. Aaron Zent on Mars Hill during the 2012 Mars and the Mojave Festival:
Steve on Mars Hill back when its name was still printed on all maps:
We conclude with a beautiful panoramic taken from Mars Hill in 2012 (click to enlarge):
Mars Hill panoramic
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