Weird California
Weird California
Weird California - By Joe Parzanese

Devil's Golf Course

Map Devil's Golf Course
Salt Pool Road, Death Valley, California

Devil's Golf Course
Devil's Golf Course

Death Valley is home to a lot of pretty interesting terrain in its rather inhospitable climate. One of these natural sites worth visiting is a large salt pan not too far from Badwater Basin. Known as the Devil's Golf Course, the area is covered in large halite salt crystal formations that creates a location that "only the devil could play golf" upon according to the 1934 National Park Service guide book.

Craggy and bumpy, the area is entirely rocky, made out of the complicated salt crystal formations that stick out of the ground all around. These salt formations were created when a former thirty foot deep salt lake, Lake Manly, evaporated leaving behind the intricate rocky surface. The salt, additionally extends deep below the ground, possibly as far as 9000 feet down.

Devil's Golf Course
Devil's Golf Course
Devil's Golf Course
Devil's Golf Course

Water sometimes rises up through the underlying salt bed, reshaping the formations as it evaporates in Death Valley's temperatures. The area is hazardous to walk on, as there are literally, at times, two foot tall salt spikes jutting out of the ground. On warm days, it is apparently possible to hear cracking coming from some of the crystaline structures. This is the salt spikes expanding and contracting.

The Death Valley saltpan is one of the largest protected saltpans in North America. Access to the Devil's Golf Course is off Badwater Road in Death Valley, as you drive from Furnace Creek to Badwater Basin. A short dirt road exits to the right, and leads to an area where you can get out to see the salt formations. The dirt parking lot is entirely surrounded by the salt landscape.

Devil's Golf Course
Devil's Golf Course
Devil's Golf Course
Devil's Golf Course
Devil's Golf Course
Devil's Golf Course



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Last Edited: 2020-12-31


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