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Joshua | profile | all galleries >> Images from Southwestern United States >> Death Valley - Spring 2005 & 2008 tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Death Valley - Spring 2005 & 2008

Hottest, Driest, Lowest: Death Valley is a land of extremes. It is one of the hottest places on the surface of the Earth with summer temperatures averaging well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit or 40 centigrades. It contains the lowest point in the Western Hemisphere at 282 feet below the level of the sea, and it is the driest place in North America with an average rainfall of only 1.96 inches a year. During the winter 2004/2005, however, Death Valley received a record rainfall; as of March 2005, Death Valley measured more than 8 inches of rain! This record rainfall caused the dormant seeds of various desert flowers to germinate, grow and fluorish at record levels as well. People flocked from all over the country to admire and of course, to take pictures of this record setting desert bloom. I came for the wild flowers but in the end, I found the dunes very fascinating as well.

The record rainfall, however, also brought some damage to Death Valley. Several access roads to some of Death Valley's "attractions" were were closed due to flooding. Zabriskie Point, Dante's View and Artist Drive were not accessible in the Spring of 2005. The first time I went to Death Valley about 22 years ago and I was overwhelmed by the variety of photogenic sceneries. Two visits later I still did not think I captured the beauty Death Valley has to offer to its full extent. There will be absolutely more trips to Death Valley for me in the not too distant future.

Update in July 2008: Two photography buddies of mine and I went to Death Valley again in the Spring of this year. The main purpose was to see the Devil's Race Track on the north side of Death Valley. For that we had to drive some 25 miles on a dirt and dusty road. In addition, we visited several spots that were not accessible in 2005. Of course, the dunes are a "must" visit.

Photographic tidbits: For the first time in 2005, captured Death Valley digitally. In addition to my trusted Canon lenses, I used a Carl Zeiss and Leica lenses adapted to my Canon body. In 2008, a Nikkor 14-24mmG zoom saw quite a bit of usage in addition to a Leica Elmarit 28mm and two Canon T&S lenses. I also resorted to a few Canon lenses for my longer focal length needs. I used a graduated Lee filter on a few shots but most the images were captured without filter. This time around, a tripod is used almost exclusively except for a few very low angle of view shots.

Enjoy the images and please feel free to leave a note on this gallery or on any of the images. Thank you for visiting.
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Near Badwater - A View of the Panamint Range Showing Snow Caps
Near Badwater - A View of the Panamint Range Showing Snow Caps
Desert Sunflower/Gold with Panamint Range in the Background
Desert Sunflower/Gold with Panamint Range in the Background
Desert Five-Spot Flowers in Foreground
"Desert Five-Spot" Flowers in Foreground
Water Hazard and Fairway at Devil's Golf Course
"Water Hazard" and "Fairway" at Devil's Golf Course
Tee Box at Devil's Golf Course
"Tee Box" at Devil's Golf Course
A Variety of Desert Flowers at Dusk
A Variety of Desert Flowers at Dusk
When the First Sunrays Hit the Dunes
When the First Sunrays Hit the Dunes
Closeup of Ripples and Ridge
Closeup of Ripples and Ridge
Not Only Sand
Not Only Sand
Three Sisters of the Dunes
Three "Sisters" of the Dunes
Photographer's Heaven But...
Photographer's Heaven But...
Compressed View of Rippled Slope
Compressed View of Rippled Slope
Striking Ripples
Striking Ripples
Practically Undisturbed Ripples
Practically Undisturbed Ripples
View of Ripples, Dunes and Mountain Range
View of Ripples, Dunes and Mountain Range
Ripples, Ripples and More Ripples
Ripples, Ripples and More Ripples
More Ripples, Dunes and Mountain Range
More Ripples, Dunes and Mountain Range
Different Types of Ripples and Sand Forms
Different Types of Ripples and Sand Forms
Slope Covered with Desert Sunflower/Gold
Slope Covered with Desert Sunflower/Gold
Not Only Flowers Were Abundant
Not Only Flowers Were Abundant
Tea Kettle Junction
Tea Kettle Junction
Devil's Race Track at Dusk
Devil's Race Track at Dusk
Devil's Race Track at Dusk
Devil's Race Track at Dusk
Painting with Light at Devil's Race Track
Painting with Light at Devil's Race Track
Dunes at Sunrise
Dunes at Sunrise
Compressed View of Dunes at Sunrise
Compressed View of Dunes at Sunrise
Self-Portrait on Dunes
Self-Portrait on Dunes
Tiny Branch on Dunes Ripples
Tiny Branch on Dunes Ripples
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