El Mirage Dry Lakebed offers some of the most scenic possibilities one could ask for from a location. The Dry Lake is immense, about three miles long and three miles wide; the lakebed offers such an array of looks, a crew could spend a week at this location and still have options. Surrounded by mountains and hills on a 360 degree arc, a flat mosaic pattern forms the floor of the lakebed. The sunsets and sunrises is a vastness of hues, as the sun slowly ascends from the east and melts into the west.
One of the biggest pluses to El Mirage is the close proximity to Los Angeles, about two hours. Victorville is about thirty minutes east of El Mirage, and offers great lodging choices, however do not be tempted to stay at Adelanto, though the town is closer than Victorville, this is an unsafe locale to stay at, in my opinion. There are many choices for catering as well, Sheri Davis or Dan Taylor at the Inland Film Commission (951 779 6700 ext. 231 or 223) can assist you with film permits, lodging, or any other questions or concerns you have. And note; do not attempt to do a commercial shoot without a permit, because rangers patrol the park 24/7.
Last summer I had a client call me and ask me if I had even been to El Mirage, and of course I indicated I have. My client had a lot of questions about the lakebed and I offered my expertise. He wanted to captured the early sunrise, so I figured he wanted a call time of 5 am, to my surprise the client wanted the crew and motor home to arrive at 1 am so that they could do
make-up hair and wardrobe and be ready to go by sunrise. With sleepy eyes we arrived at 1 am, coffee was brewing by 1:05 am and by 5 am the crew anxiously awaited for the spectacular sunrise. By 11 am we were finished and headed back home, it was a great shoot.