This is Badwater Basin, the lowest spot in the Western Hemisphere…282 ft. below sea level. It’s bizarre to walk through a landscape so barren. It’s surrounded by mountains of up to 13,000 ft. in a 15 mile radius around it, and all the rainwater in those mountains empties into Badwater, washing down the moutains, forming huge salt beds once the water evaporates. By the way, the reason Death Valley is so dry is that storm systems have to pass over four mountain ranges before they get here. For the most part, the storms are very weak by the time they reach this desert.