Reaching a new low

After surviving the Golden Canyon endurance challenge, we headed down towards Badwater Basin, the lowest point in the US (282 feet below sea level). I, of course, wanted to “get low” at the lowest point in the US, so posed for Stephanie laying down. She, of course, joined in the fun.

Afterwards we checked out the Natural Bridge, and then drove along Artists Drive just as the sun was setting. Back at the campsite I started a fire, though it was actually warm enough that we didn’t need it. We used it to cook some hot dogs which we ate with with cheddar cheese on flat bread. Hit the spot.

Driving towards Badwater Basin
Driving towards Badwater Basin
The bad water of Badwater
The bad water of Badwater
Justin laying down on the Badwater Basin
Me, laying down on the well-trampled salt bed
Stephanie laying down on Badwater Basin
Stephanie as low as she can go
Line making sea level above Badwater Basin
Where sea level is
Death Valley at sunset
Death Valley at sunset


Looks like a good place for a limbo contest.

My left knee reminds me that my limbo days are numbered. But yeah, I imagine you could do some funny things out there.

For instance, there were several unexplainable “potholes” in the otherwise flat, well-trodden strip of the basin. I’m assuming people had probably dug them to get…a little bit lower.


Did you lick the salt? I don’t know why I ponder that, but I wonder how strong it tasted of salt. Also how hot was it?

Nope, didn’t lick the salt. Probably wouldn’t have killed me, but there was more in there than just salt. And it was really hot. Like 91°F or something.


Beautiful in its desolation, but somehow I just don’t relate to it

I think the pictures make it look more desolate than it was, or at least than I remember it. Some people just rave about the desert wildflowers in spring for example, though I admit I wasn’t that impressed. We may also have been a little late for the full bloom.

But man some people LOVE the desert. We met one man from Michigan who had just driven 2 days straight (sleeping in his car in between) just to get a fews days in Death Valley. He said he’d been there 10 or more times.

I’ve been following along here with interest. It’s one of our favorite places….so much so that we got
married at Badwater. We used to go there more frequently (2000, 2002, etc.), and are due for a trip back.

We had to turn back on that Golden Canyon hike one year; too hot and not enough water. We felt bad about it until reading later that someone else tried it in similar conditions and they found him dead.

It’s a beautiful place, full of life despite its name.


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