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Death Valley Geology Overview:

Lost Lakes

In addition to structural changes, Death Valley has been subjected to major climatic changes throughout the last three million years. During North America's last major Ice Age, the valley was part of a system of large lakes. The lakes dissappeared approximately 10,000 years ago when the climate warmed. A shorter Ice Age, about 2,000 years ago, resulted in a smaller lake system. When this water evaporated, vast fields of salt deposits were left behind.

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photo of Death Valley salt pan
Death Valley Salt Pan
GLOSSARY > pan, salt lake,
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