Artist’s Palette

Artist's Drive

Artist’s Drive

October 28th, 2020

After yesterday’s excursion in grayscale, today we’re back in full color. Artist’s Drive is a one-way loop through the hills just south of Furnace Creek in Death Valley. We were the only ones on the road on this warm and sunny morning.

Artist's Drive

Artist’s Drive

The road leads to a colorful escarpment in shades of taupe, tan and light blue-green caused by minerals in the soil. The sign at the site describes it this way:

A Palette of Color

More than five million years ago, repeated volcanic eruptions blanketed the landscape, depositing ash and minerals. The volcanic minerals were chemically altered by heat and water, with variable amounts of oxygen and other introduced elements. Chemical analyses have identified a paint pot of elements: iron, aluminum, magnesium, and titanium, but no copper. Some of the colored minerals here include red hematite and green chlorite. This is truly a natural artist’s palette of color splashed across the slope. The time of day, clouds and the rare rainfall shift the intensity of the colors, making each visit slightly different.

Artist's Palette

Artist’s Palette

Artist's Palette

Artist’s Palette

Artist's Palette

Artist’s Palette

In real life, Artist’s Palette looks a little bit like melted ice cream to me. A bit of rocky road, coffee toffee bar crunch and mint chocolate chip on a hot day, in a big cup.

The winding road to the ice cream pile is fun — here’s a 30-second video along the way.

More tomorrow from somewhere else!
Kelly

Post of the Day: Adding a bit of light to the darkness as we get through the pandemic together. This series features travel photos from my archives, shared with you while staying close to home.

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