Place: Ubehebe Crater, Death Valley National Park, California
Coordinates: 37.01083, -117.45490
On the morning my friend and I had left Panamint Springs, the looming storm was still looming. After spending some time looking for wildlife around the ghost town of Ballarat we headed eastward over the mountains and into Death Valley itself. By then, large raindrops were falling and the smell of first rain (in the desert almost every rain has that first rain smell) filled the air. Of the bloom spectacle I promised my friend, there was no sight. The valley, however, was not barren. Little yellow flowers dotted the wide gaps between the Creosote and brittlebush shrubs: Desert sunflower, all over the place!
And up close. The lively bright yellow was a much appreciated sight in the otherwise pre-storm glum. The little suns on the earth made up well for the hidden sun in the sky!
|Desert Sunflower (Garaea canescens)|
|The trail to to the bottom of Ubehebe|
|The eastern wall of Ubehebe|
None extended very far. Still, it was an interesting experience.
|The trail and the western crater wall, viewed from inside a crevice|
And not just the rocks are colorful there: the unassuming grayness of the desert holly shrub is dotted with scarlet flowers.
|Desert Holly (Atriplex hymenelytra). Photo by עננת|
|Ubehebe - an almost full view. Taken on October 2011.|
Many thanks to my friend עננת for identifying the plants and for allowing me to use her desert holly photo.