Badwater Basin at Death Valley National Park, is a landscape of extremes. Extreme temperatures, extreme elevation changes and extreme dryness. Because the basin is at an elevation of 282 feet below sea level, the average high temperature in July is 116 degrees F. The highest temperature ever recorded on Earth was 134 degrees at Death Valley in 1913. Little wonder that I and most others visit during the winter months.
Badwater is surrounded by soaring peaks and eroded sandstone formations. Snow-covered Telescope Peak, standing at 11,049 feet, is quite a contrast to the salt flats at Badwater Basin. The salt flats are approximately 200 square miles in area and are formed when rain flushes minerals from the nearby hills and mountains to the flats of Badwater. The high heat and dryness ( DV only receives 2 inches of moisture annually) evaporates everything except the salt.
Some images from the past week at Zion National Park, Utah.
It was getting dark out and I was in my vehicle when I noticed some movement out the passenger side window. I picked up the camera and shot as quickly as possible as a jackrabbit was chasing another. They were moving really fast! Thus the blurriness.
They were all photographed last week along California’s Central Coast. I was thrilled to see the Condors as they hovered along the steep cliffs just south of Big Sur. The Zebras were grazing at Hearst Ranch near San Simeon and the Elephant Seals were chillin just a bit north of San Simeon.
Most of these were tagged. This one is number 70. As you probably know, Condors are on the Endangered Species List. There are approximately 425 left in the world although at one time there were only 27. Conservation efforts by Ventana Wildlife Society amongst other groups made these images possible. There are 75 along the Big Sur Coastline.
To get to the other side?
So I wouldn’t run it over and have it for Thanksgiving?
I actually shot, eh photographed, this Wild Turkey the other day at Zion NP through my windshield.
My friend decided to camp with me in the Kaibab National Forest near The Grand Canyon. The Kaibab is about 20 degrees cooler than where I live near Zion NP and is a welcome relief from the heat. More pics coming from a tremendous lightning storm, a full moon rising, a time-lapse video from Marble Canyon.
Yes, this frog, only 2 inches long, can really make some noise! And it’s not a single rivet. It’s a series of rivets that have a staccato-like delivery that resembles a machine gun sound or the sound of a woodpecker pecking. The male frog produces this sound to attract females during the spring breeding season. Frogs usually make the calls near bodies of water that are suitable for breeding and egg laying. The eggs hatch in about 2 weeks and metamorphose from tadpoles in 45-75 days. The video below, shot at Zion National Park, Utah, captures the sound as I was within a few feet of one loud one.