Monday, February 23, 2015

Rain in Death Valley

See that little white rectangle at the center/top of the photograph? That is sea level.

Thistle 282' below sea level.

Today we mostly just hung out in camp. We wanted a do-nothing day, and that's what we indulged ourselves with. Short walks. Reading. Writing. Talking. Sketching. Eating. Lovely!!

By late afternoon we'd had enough of nothing, and set out to explore. We head for Badwater Basin. This basin is the lowest spot in North America, at 282 feet below sea level. We felt exceptional to be standing in a spot that much below sea level until we read that the Dead Sea, between Jordan and Israel is 1371 feet below sea level. Our exceptional bubble was burst wide open!

A salt river. From a distance it looks like people are walking on water.

Too much nothing made Ed a little crazy.

And Fran's cabin fever broke loose too

We dig for new facts to reestablish our feeling of exceptionalism. We found little tidbits to help us out. Such as, the Death Valley salt basin covers more than 200 square miles and is 40 miles long by 5 miles wide. And, it is the driest spot in North America at 1.5 inches of rainfall annually. Then, on our Badwater visit, it began to mist. As we drive to Artist's Palette if turns to serious rain. Rain! Ha! How exceptional is that? It continued raining long into the night. This morning there are puddles in camp and the mountains are white with snow.

Rain in Death Valley

We are left with high expectations for desert wildflower bloom.

"Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food,
and medicine to the mind."

- Luther Burbank

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