Water Flows Back Into Death Valley

Record rains help a lake reappear in the hottest place on Earth

PUBLISHED NOV 21, 2023 10:10 P.M.
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Climate change models suggest that bone-dry Death Valley could see more torrential rain in the future.

Climate change models suggest that bone-dry Death Valley could see more torrential rain in the future.   Jakub Maculewicz   Shutterstock.com

California’s Death Valley isn’t a place typically known for its large bodies of water. The iconic desert, which runs along California’s eastern border with Nevada, is the home of the hottest temperature ever recorded on Earth: 134 degrees in 1913 in a place aptly named Furnace.

Record rains have helped something interesting happen in Death Valley, though: Make a lake reappear.

The New York Times had a story out Nov. 20 talking about how torrential rains in Death Valley—an unheard-of two inches in one day over the summer of 2023—helped a lake form in Badwater Basin.

And it might not be the last time something like this happens in this part of California’s desert, with a park ranger telling the Times, “All the climate change models say that this area of the country is expected to have more frequent, large storms.”

The full story, “In Death Valley, a Rare Lake Comes Alive,” can be found on NYTimes.com.

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