Due to its incredible aridity and the presence of some of America’s most hostile places, the Mojave Desert is sometimes referred to as the “Valley of Death” by many.
Nevertheless, over time, it has developed a solid reputation as a vacation spot.
The fabled Death Valley (yep, it’s in the “Valley of Death”; I know, it’s a little unimaginative) and the Las Vegas Region are both there, as well as being close to Sin City and Los Angeles, both major tourist destinations.
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Death Valley National Park
Death Valley in Nevada, which has both the world’s highest recorded surface temperatures and North America’s lowest point in respect to sea level, is located on the Mojave Desert, roughly halfway between Los Angeles and Las Vegas.
The valley’s fame and the somber name were formed out of a tragedy that occurred in the 1800s. A crew of explorers seeking fame and money on the west coast got lost. Due to the scarcity of food and water, as well as the intense heat and freezing cold, many members of this unfortunate group would perish.
Which makes perfect sense given that the area is a dry, rocky canyon where any lost individuals run the risk of becoming dehydrated due to the intense heat. Don’t forget to bring water!
For serious hikers and cyclists, it’s a fantastic location. Due to the almost complete lack of light pollution and the presence of a few excellent resorts and hot springs, it is also a highly popular location for stargazers.
The world’s highest recorded temperature of 134 degrees Fahrenheit (55 degrees Celsius), measured in 1913 at The Furnace Creek in Death Valley.
The second place on our list goes to Badwater Basin, which has the lowest elevation in both the western hemisphere and the United States. Badwater Basin is 279 feet, or roughly 85 meters, below sea level at its lowest point!
Doesn’t seem too dry for a desert, do it? Let’s not forget that the Mojave Desert, the area near the water, is where all of these locations may be found.
Badwater Basin is one of various waterfronts that can be discovered in the desert, returning to the meaning of the Mojave’s name. While the Colorado River and Lake Mead are situated on the eastern fringe of the desert, the Mojave River largely flows underground to Soda Lake.
Salton Sea State Recreation Area
On the Colorado River in Central California sits the Salton Sea State Recreation Area. Fishermen, fans of water sports, and birdwatchers all frequent this location.
The low-lying lake, which is around 30 miles by 8 to 14 miles, is below sea level and lacks a natural outlet. Another stunningly barren oasis in the arid Mojave, this one serving as a crucial resting place for migrating birds.
On the north bank, there are camping and picnic spots that are perfect for long stays by anglers.
The Mojave National Preserve contains a section of the Mojave Desert in Southern California that includes the enormous gravel sand dunes known as the Kelso Dunes.
They are a part of a broader system of wind-swept, ancient sandhills that extends from Lucerne Valley to Barstow in the southeast.
Mount San Bernardino and the Victorville Fault are to the north and south, respectively, of the Kelso Dunes.
The dune field is your typical Hollywood-style desert, complete with bedouins and high-rising mountain ranges all around you. In addition, there are vast vistas of impressive sand dunes that extend as far as the eye can see.