Panamint Area of Death Valley

February 25, 2009


Photographer: David Harrington
Summary Author: David Harrington, Jim Foster

This photo shows a multi-layered and multi-colored mountain range taken on highway 190 near Panamint Springs in Death Valley National Park, California. Different minerals (NPS Geo Site) show up as variegated band structures. Iron salt deposits are reds, pinks and yellows; decomposing mica appears greenish; manganese is responsible for the purple hues. Note that the dark flow-like feature on top of the mountain is an ancient volcanic cap. Death Valley National Park is in the "Basin and Range" region of the western and southwestern U.S. Floor-to-peak height differences are quite large here as the basins are not far from sea level and the mountains can be over 10,000 ft (3,048 m). The image was taken on October 13, 2008 with a Pentax iST camera and a Pentax 18-250 mm aspheric zoom lens.