Dean M. Chriss
Badwater Sunriser, Death Valley National Park, California

Badwater Sunrise, Death Valley

(Click image to enlarge)

In this photograph the snow capped Telescope Peak and mountains of the Panamint Range glow at sunrise and reflect in the saline pool at Badwater in Death Valley National Park. Badwater is a small spring-fed pool made undrinkable by the accumulated salts of the surrounding basin, giving it the "bad water" name. The pool supports animal and plant life including pickleweed, aquatic insects, and the Badwater snail.

With an elevation of 282 feet (86 m) below sea level the Badwater Basin is the lowest point in North America. Telescope Peak rises 11,325 feet above Badwater. This extreme elevation difference is something that must be seen to be appreciated.

This photograph was captured on Kodachrome ISO 25 film before the National Park Service erected a parking lot, overlook, deck, and benches that make this view impossible to see or photograph today.