Death Valley National Park Photo Gallery

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Death Valley National Park gives new meaning to the word extreme. The highest temperatures in the United States are regularly recorded here, and the potential shift in altitude ranges from 282 feet below sea level—the lowest point in the United States—too an astonishing 11,049 feet.  
Credit: National Park Service 
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Many people assume that all deserts are covered with sand; however, less than one percent of Death Valley is coated with dunes. Those that do exist in this park, such as Mesquite Flat Dunes, are protected wilderness areas, and evoke an otherworldly feel—which explains why they've been used as filming locations for movies such as Star Wars.  
Credit: Alan Van Valkenburg/National Park Service 
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At 282 feet below sea level, Badwater Basin is the lowest point in North America. Covered by a thick crust of crystallized salt, the 200-square-mile region constantly changes as salt crystals expand and passing rainstorms wash away dust and bring forth a fresh layer of salt. The name Badwater stems from its small, spring-fed pool of water next to the road, filled with salts that make it undrinkable.  
Credit: Alan Van Valkenburg/National Park Service 
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Death Valley's mountains are layered with a spectrum of colors. Red, orange, purple, green, and brown patterns paint the rock, telling geological stories thousands of years old. The most magnificent spot to view these colors is Artist's Palette, where green, yellow, blue, and pink mineral deposits swirl through patterned rock like a tie-dyed t-shirt. The colors are most intense at sunset.  
Credit: National Park Service 
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The most luxurious of Death Valley's lodges, Furnace Creek Inn sits on a hillside oasis of green grass and palm trees with winding stone paths. The inn features tennis courts, a spring-fed swimming pool, an upscale dining room, spa services, and outdoor yoga classes.  
Credit: courtesy, Xanterra Parks & Resorts 
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Dante's View offers one of the best vantage points for admiring Death Valley. At more than 5,000 feet above the valley floor, this is the spot for photographers of all levels; the best light occurs in the early morning.  
Credit: Alan Van Valkenburg/NPS 
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Hiking trails in Death Valley are unlike most others, as they aren't constructed and don't always have a set path. Instead, you walk along ridges, up canyons, or on fairly flat, rocky ground. Stop by the Visitor Center, where you can talk with a ranger and obtain a detailed map of the area. Golden Canyon is a more defined scenic hike—a narrow path with canyon walls rising up on either side, opening up as the path winds up the side of the canyon to stunning views of Death Valley.  
Credit: Erika Lloyd 
 
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