Death Valley California: The Innards of the Earth

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Death Valley California: The Innards of the Earth
« on: November 26, 2010, 07:00:23 »
Death Valley California: The Innards of the Earth
   


California’s Valley of Death is the lowest, hottest and driest in North America, as low as you can go at minus 282 feet (86 meters), smack dab in the middle of the largest national park in the coterminous United States (140 by 5-15 miles; 225 by 8-24 kilometers), a mere 85 miles (136 kilometers) from the highest point atop Mt. Whitney jutting 14,494 feet (4418 meters); perhaps proving it’s time the U.S. went metric.

Death Valley was a rich ‘un, chock full of white gold, aka borax, regular gold, copper and silver. The gold mining boomtown of Ryolite lasted a decade, exploding with 10,000 speculators, its own stock exchange and ribald opera, but the mine closed in 1911 and the population plummeted to zero.

However, the famous 20-mule team wagon trains hauling borax endured in American folklore and on television, narrated by the great American communicator, Ronald Dutch Reagan.
   

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