An Ethel Among Mermans (thornwolf) wrote,
An Ethel Among Mermans
thornwolf

Death Valley - Under The Sea ..and.. Needs More Salt!

Death Valley has a few salt pans, Devil's Golf Course being the largest salt pan in the United States. Here I'll show you Badwater, which holds the recorded lowest point in the US, and the Devil's Golf Course.

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First off, Badwater. Aptly named because while there is water, it is so polluted with salt, borax, and other minerals, it would be a very bad idea to drink it. Although surprisingly creatures do live in the water, such as the Badwater snail. Seems counterintuitive for a snail to live in a salty place.
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What's that sign say?
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Oh crap!
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The strip of land in the top of this photo is The Badwater Fan, a giant Alluvial Fan, one of many found in Death Valley. We saw part of it from above when we went to Dante's View at night, but it was way too cold and windy to stay there for long. Its hard to make out the shape from the ground, but the linked pic gives you an idea.
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At midnight we came back to Badwater and walked out onto the salt flat to see the salt crystals glow in the moonlight. It looks like you're in a frozen ocean with absolutely nothing around, and so deathly silent you think even your own heart beating is "too loud". If you haven't done this, you must! Best at a full or nearly full moon. Although we kept trying to scare ourselves with the occasional cold pockets of air being the ghosts of mule teams, but we decided that if there /were/ any ghosts they'd be too busy with the new WoW Licht King package to bother haunting us that night. Also...saltball fights? Not as fun as snowball fights. And not as refreshing :(

Next up, Devil's Golf Course. Someday, I /will/ whack some golf balls here. Would be hell to find them I'm certain. The thing about this place though is the salt crystals are so sharp, they will cut you oldschool if you even so much as look at them. Nooot a place I'd want to accidentally stumble through if I was a lost pioneer.
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Gretchen is unafraid.
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More to come!
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