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Badwater Basin

Death Valley National Park

Death Valley, California

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Badwater Basin

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  • View of the basin from Badwater Road.- Badwater Basin
  • The Badwater parking lot.- Badwater Basin
  • Informational diagrams at the parking lot.- Badwater Basin
  • Entry to Badwater Basin.- Badwater Basin
  • The lowest elevation in the North America.- Badwater Basin
  • Where the water rises from the aquifer under Death Valley.- Badwater Basin
  • Badwater Basin.- Badwater Basin
  • Badwater Basin in Death Valley National Park.- Badwater Basin
  • Salt flat on Badwater Basin.- Badwater Basin
  • Salt flat on Badwater Basin.- Badwater Basin
  • Badwater Basin.- Badwater Basin
  • Salt formations on Badwater Basin.- Badwater Basin
  • Salt formations on Badwater Basin.- Badwater Basin
  • Amargosa Mountains from Badwater Basin.- Badwater Basin
  • Salt encroching on the mud flats in Badwater Basin.- Badwater Basin
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Short drive from Furnace Creek. Beautiful views. Lowest elevation in North America.
Cons: 
None.
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Region:
Death Valley, CA
Congestion: 
High
Pets allowed: 
No
Parking Pass: 
National Park Pass
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Fall
Total Distance: 
1.00 mi (1.61 km)
Trail type: 
There-and-back
Trailhead Elevation: 
-282.00 ft (-85.95 m)
Current Local Weather:
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Hike Description

Hike Description

Contributor

One of the most popular attractions in Death Valley National Park is the 200-square-mile salt pan that spans Badwater Basin. Among the largest protected salt pans in the world, Badwater Basin is a fascinating and beautiful stop. Although Death Valley National Park is essentially a free hike area, there are a few designated points of interest to check out within the salt pan itself. 

The location called Badwater is 18 miles south of Furnace Creek along Badwater Road. Here you will have easy access onto the salt flat, where there is plenty of room to explore. Notably, this is the location where water from the underground aquifer rises out of the ground, giving the area it's name. At 282 feet below sea level, you will also be standing in the lowest spot in North America.

The ground is relatively flat with no elevation change for miles. The main path out into the salt pan is worn flat and smooth. If you walk out past where most people stop, you can see the salt pan in it's natural state. Here the halite salt formations look like they have bubbled up and popped, leaving holes in the tops of the domes. From the middle of the basin there is an amazing, 360-view of the Panamint and Amargosa Mountains that tower above you. 

 

 

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Updates, Tips + Comments

Field Guide + Trail Map

Field Guide + Trail Map

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(4 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(20 within a 30 mile radius)

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