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Death Valley National Park.
Elsewhere in the Mojave, just north of Joshua Tree, a seemingly endless noon grills a vast expanse of barren dunes lying far below sea level.
This is Death Valley, the most exotic of our national parks, east of the Sierra Nevada, between the arid Great Basin in the Mojave, this is the largest park in the contiguous United States.
Though there's often snow on the distant Pyramid Mountains, it could be the hottest place in North America in August, a brutal 120 F in the shade, if shape can be found hot enough to melt a pair of shoes, a sign it.
Badwater Basin marks the lowest spot on the continent.
A drop from Death Valley's highest mountain, 11,049 foot telescope peak to Badwater Basin is twice the death of Grand Canyon.
There were large lakes here once in prehistoric past, but the earth's climates changed and the lakes dried up.
Yet Death Valley exudes a strange beauty all its own, as America's poet Mark Strand has discovered, it's 1,000,000 plus areas of yellows, oranges, reds and purples.
Smudges of mag unease suggest a Martian landscape or what we believe the reaches of Mars to be like precious water from rare desert springs sustains wildlife.
Humans were drawn here in the 19 hundreds by the lands.
Mineral wealth mines were constructed.
Borax, a mineral with many industrial uses, was extracted from the ancient salt crusts lining the lakes that had once shimmered here.
The borax was hauled to the railroad and huge 20 mule team wagons.
10 city sprang up, which gave way to settlements of wood and stone.
Riah light is one of them.
Today, Ryall light just outside the park is a ghost town and well worth a visit.
Now these ghost towns bleaching the torrid sun until one day they simply fade back into the desert.
But all isn't ghostly.
After a lengthy stretch of bareness of raw, harsh wasteland, a visitor encounters.
No, it isn't a mirage or a sign of sunstroke.
This architectural hybrid part Spanish part Mediterranean heart Hollywood Back lot is Scotty's Castle Most famous man made attraction in Death Valley, though he never really owned it.
It's named after Death Valley Scotty, the wildest two legged critter ever to dwell in these parts.
As a young cowboy, Scotty travels with Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show.
Performing is a trick rider and sharpshooter, but these aren't studies only talents.
He has an inborn knack for you might say, playing tricks with playing folks.
Call it one of his imaginary grub.
Stakes is a pie in the sky gold mine in a little known value.
Well, Scotty goes east to Chicago.
The sell shares in his pipe Dream mind to unsuspecting businessman.
As luck would have it, he peddles 1/3 of the shares to Albert Johnson, wealthy president of the National Life Insurance Company.
Study had corralled a real sucker Poor Johnson hadn't seen so much as a single gold nugget, please.
With himself, Scotty returns to Death Valley, leaving the swindled Albert Johnson behind in Chicago.
Or does a telegram reaches Scotty.
Albert Johnson is coming to Death Valley to see for himself this gold mine, of which he is now part owner.
Scotty's alarmed but can't this way.
Johnson from coming out on route to Death Valley, Albert Johnson and Scott Air halted by masked bands.
It's a hold up.
Rumor has it that Scotty Holdup staged as a delaying tactic.
In any case, Johnson returns to Chicago, never having seen the booth.
Johnson makes another trip.
Scotty's beside himself.
It seems that Johnson had some serious health problems and finds the desert air healing a za.
Matter of fact, he hasn't felt so well in years, as he does in Death Valley.
His visits become longer and more frequent, and soon he's bringing his wife, Bessie, along with them.
Bessie, too, likes the desert, but she dislikes sleeping in a tent among rattlesnakes and scorpions.
Bessie wants something more comfortable.
And so in the 19 twenties, construction begins on what comes to be called Scotty's Castle.
Today you can tour the opulently furnished rooms, the Great Hall Yeah, and the Music Room.
With its theatre organ of 1121 pipes, the Johnsons allow their mansion to be called Scotty's Castle.
The three of them become fast friends, and Albert Johnson lets it be known that the castle's construction was financed with profits from the gold mine, which never did exist.
Vote touring Scotty's Castle is a stellar attraction.
Death Valley offers sundry other activities of the kind that tone the body for the rugged during the cooler months, hiking is popular and being the wild West horseback riding one can make Death Valley a golfing vacation with a whole new take.
I'm golf.
The 18 hole, par 70 Furnace Creek courses, the world's lowest elevation golf course.
There's a noticeable difference in how the ball responds.
This course is a challenge.
Seasonally, the stubbornly dry desert fields to brief torrents of winter rain and the desert explodes.
Springtime array of exotic flowers.
Thetis is Death Valley when it is most alive.
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Death Valley National Park

5 Folder Collection
林宜悉 published on July 3, 2020
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