Golden Canyon Geology Tour
An Abrasive Situation
In February 1976, a four-day storm dropped 2.3 inches of rain at Furnace Creek. On the last day of the
storm, a violent downpour caused a surge of water, mud, and rock to flow through these narrows.
Such sediment-laden floods work like sandpaper, cutting away and undermining the rocky canyon walls. In narrows such as
these, flood waters are constricted and the speed increases. If you look closely at the walls of the canyon. you will see
a coating of mud that indicates the height of the water that has moved through these narrows.
Flash floods like these have been shaping the canyons of Death Valley for millions of years.
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Coating of mud on lower canyon wall shows storm water level