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Death Valley Superbloom 2016

posted Mar 20, 2016, 3:33 PM by Jay Lieske   [ updated Mar 20, 2016, 3:34 PM ]
I took a day off of work so that Jude and I could take a (very long) single-day trip to the Mojave Desert and Death Valley to see the “superbloom”.  It was amazing.  This was Jude’s first time to Death Valley, and I was last there on a Boy Scout camping trip in 1980. 

The desert landscape is stark and geologic, the earth-tone colors of grey and brown, red, black, and white.  I was drawn to the forms of the mountains, many of them striped with volcanic and sedimentary strata.  I connected with the landscape much more as a 50 year-old than a 14 year-old.
Jude on Mojave Desert highway in Panamint Valley

Jude captured my joy among the rocks and flowers.
Jay in Death Valley landscape at Townes Pass

In the areas of the superbloom, there is a hazy yellow tint overlay in the washes and alluvial fans.  When we got close, we could see that the land was dotted with desert sunflowers, bright fist-sized flowers suspended 2-3 feet above the ground on wiry stems.
Death Valley wildflowers at Beatty Cutoff

We took a break at the Furnace Creek Inn for an espresso.  One outlying building burned down last year, but the rest of the inn has a quality of old grandeur, with a bit of The Shining mixed in.
Jude at Furnace Creek Inn in Death Valley

More photos on Flickr: Death Valley Superbloom 2016