Racetrack Playa
After major storms, water accumulates on the south end of Racetrack Playa. The south end of the playa is a couple feet lower than at the north end. The water typically is only a few inches thick. Rocks imbedded in floating ice on the ephemeral pond may be responsible for some of the sliding rock trails. Other investigations suggest that the sliding rock trails can also form from strong winds that occur on the playa following intense mountain wind storms (accompanied by soaking precipitation) (Messina and Stoffer, 1999).
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Last modified: 11/30/2010