Trona Pinnacles National Natural Landmark

 

Trona Pinnacles National Natural Landmark is just south of Trona in the Searles Valley.  The dry lakebed of Searles Lake, which formed during the Ice Ages between the Slate and Argus Mountains, contains 98 of the 104 natural chemical elements.  The lakebed was first exploited for itís borax, beginning in 1873.  Today, IMC Global continues mining operations.

The 500+ pinnacles or tufa spires rise up to 140 feet above the dry lake bed, all within a 15-square-mile area.  The pinnacles formed underwater through the interaction of blue-green algae with deposits of calcium carbonate on the lake bottom.  Many movies and commercials have been filmed here, including Star Trek 5, Tim Burtonís Planet of the Apes, and Dinosaur.

www.ca.blm.gov/ridgecrest/trona.html

www.desertusa.com/mag98/june/stories/trona.html

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