Death Valley National Park including Panamint Valley and Saline Valley hot springs and Mount Whitney are covered by two cellular base stations. Both are located on high mountain peaks and are operated by ATT and a third now added by Commnet wireless. Death Valley Furnace Creek is covered with GSM and CDMA digital by Commnet a roaming provider.
Rogers Peak (Removed By Park Service, better get a Satellite Phone) covered most of Death and Panamint Valley. Cerro Gordo Peak covers the Saline Valley and Mt Whitney area.
Panamint Valley: Some ATT 3G UMTS coverage but its now best to have a Satellite Phone
As of 8/2011 Rogers Peak is gone(get a satellite phone!!). Cerro Gordo now provides CDMA. GSM and ATT 3G UMTS (digital only)
4/2010 Commnet wireless is now operating a GSM and CDMA roaming tower near Furnace Creek in Death Valley. Verizon, Sprint, att, Tmobile etc Postpaid customers can roam on this tower as well as many overseas GSM providers customers from Europe etc. The tower is located down in Death Valley and should cover the valley fairly well.
OnStar: Older OnStar To make a call from Saline, push the red button and tell the operator to place the call for you. (this is basically Verizon service and the red button bypasses the roaming list that blocks Cerro Gordo tower)
Verizon Wireless: Verizon will work in parts of Death Valley. The Verizon roaming list blocks Cerro Gordo. Verizon postpaid users can roam on the commnet tower at Furnace Creek.
Sprint/Alltel: Same as Verizon
Cingular/ATT/T-Mobile(GSM) (Post Paid Only) : Coverage on parts of Saline Valley road and 190. Works at Saline Hot Springs, look around for a hot spot. 11/2010: ATT has now added 3G UMTS WCDMA to Cerro Gordo. ATT pre and post paid customers with a 3G handset get fairly good reception.
Trona: Verizon now has a tower near Trona that covers the town and hwy 178 down to Ridgecrest China Lake and Trona Road. This tower appears to have about a 10 mile hard distance limit so use is very limited to main roads, Trona and the Searles Valley lake area. If your approaching Trona from Panamint Valley you will be able to make calls at the Trona Airport turnoff.(cdma phones only, Verizon/Sprint)
Rumor: 12/2009 Commnet wireless may be in installing a digital roaming tower in the Furnace Creek area. This would most likely provide service to Verizon, Sprint, att and tmobile post paid customers.
Tips: In inexpensive direct-connect external antenna is a great help. GSM phones have very poor internal antennas and an external antenna is most often the difference between ‘no service’ and a solid call. Get one here.
Hot Spots: The main road that runs through Panamint Valley, good analog coverage. Most all of Badwater Road up to Jubilee pass through Death Valley, good analog.
Saline Valley Road, one mile below lower warm spring. Fair digital only coverage. External antenna or yagi will increase reception greatly.
Lee Flat has a great digital signal. Panamint Valley Road has fair cdma digital coverage from Cerro Gordo.
Using Cerro Gordo peak for data/internet at Palm Spring Saline Valley.
Panamint Springs Resort = Cellular
Rural Setups/External Antennas
M800 Digital Bag Phone