15 Strangest Facts About The Mojave Desert

Due to the area being located in a rain shadow of the Sierra Nevada mountains, Mojave desert is a dry place. The Mojave Desert is known for its harsh terrain and arid climate. However, some of the strangest facts about the Mojave desert you might not expect. Here are the fifteen of the most bizarre Mojave Desert facts.

1 Death Valley Of Mojave Is One Of The Hottest Places On Earth

Death Valley in Mojave Desert

Death Valley National Park is a complex land area, which features ecological diversity as well as rare wildlife. The park is known for its spectacular desert scenery, geology, undisturbed wilderness and historical value. Nearly 550 square miles of the 3.3 million acres are below sea level. Death Valley’s climate is typically hot and dry because it’s the lowest and hottest place in North America and has one of the driest place on earth.

The geological formation of this region always captures attention, weather permitting, with incredible sights that include Telescope Peak standing at over 11,000 feet; its lowest point is 282 feet below sea level near Badwater; and many more active mountain peaks including nearby Trona Peak.

The national park received its name because gold prospectors were eager to get their hands on some quick cash during its dramatic creation in 1849. Many died along the way due to inexperienced navigating their way through this harsh desert terrain during what became known as “the great western gold rush.”

2 Joshua Trees Only Grow In The Mojave Desert

Joshua tree is the largest yuccas in the world

The Joshua tree is the largest yuccas in the world and grows in the Mojave Desert. It has a spike-leafed, good look at appearance that exists nowhere else in the world. They vary in height from 20-70 feet with a diameter of 1-3 feet. The trees take 50 to 60 years to mature and they can live up to 150 year. Americans enjoy two different desert ecosystems meeting in Joshua Tree National Park; that includes plants, animals, and different climates as well as an interesting terrain made out of rocks and grasses.

The Joshua tree likes dry soil on plains, slopes, and mesas, often growing on hillsides. It has bell-shaped blooms containing 6 creamy yellow sepals each with a bulbous base which opens into 12-18 inch tall clusters and smells unpleasant.

The flowers are mostly seen during springtime with fruits coming out soon after maturity by late spring revealing many seeds on the ground but having developed more than half through their quickening development process before losing all their moisture – which makes them relatively flat with half’s raised side being smooth white heathcliff of tenacious adhesiveness or some other such thing.

3 Mojave’s Calico Ghost Town Was Once A Major Silver Mining Town

Calico Ghost Town In Mojave desert

Many of the smaller towns that have seen exponential growth in recent years, including Havasu City, Kingman, Laughlin, and Bullhead City among others. However some have been abandoned entirely. Calico is one such town.

The old settlement of Calico is about a mile east of Barstow that was near one of the major silver mining towns in the region from 1881 to 1896, before it ceased to exist due to an insufficiency in the market (1894) or because of a collapse in production. By the turn of the 20th Century it had been abandoned.

4 Mojave Have The Extreme Temperatures With Hot Days And Cold Nights

Mojave desert extreme temperature

The Mojave Desert in particular has a harsh weather pattern for the area with hot days and cold nights, but each area of the desert has unique climate levels, which can vary depending on elevation levels. A record temperature measuring 134 °F (57 °C) was reached by the Badwater Salt Pan. In the mountains, snow can cover the peaks while some valleys do not get below 80 °F (27 °C) all year long.

5 Mojave’s Antelope Valley Is Shaped Like A Triangle

Antelope Valley in Mojave desert

Antelope Valley is in the California High Desert, bordering the San Gabriel Mountains and the Tehachapi Mountains to its east and west, while it is surrounded by the Mojave Desert on all sides except for a small area to its south. Geographically-speaking Antelope Valley is shaped like a triangle surrounded on all sides by mountains with the southern edge of the valley being the San Andreas Fault.

Because of the immense herds of antelope, this area is known as Antelope Valley. Antelope Valley covers 665 square miles with a western and eastern border, while its southern side is marked by the San Gabriel and Sierra Pelona Mountains as well as Portal Ridge. However, there are signs that farming in this area may not be so traditional. With average annual wind speeds at 14 to 20 miles per hour and plenty of clear, sunny days, farmers here have taken advantage of the easily renewable wind and solar power sources going on throughout the region.

The wider Antelope Valley covers a large area in Western Mojave Desert, where its northern and western edges border the Tehachapi Mountains while the east side borders hot, dry expanses of Mojave desert.

6 Large Cities Close By

Mojave desert facts

The Mojave Desert is by far the most fascinating desert because of its expansive environment. It has a large population residing within its borders. Las Vegas, St. George and Lancaster – three cities located in Nevada, Utah and California – are the metropolitan areas where this population lives. One of the largest metropolitan areas with a population of 2.5 million is found in Las Vegas in Nevada. With 850,000 people living there as well, Los Angeles has the second largest population within the Mojave Desert’s borders.

7 Highest And Lowest Peaks of High Desert

Mojave Desert

The Badwater Salt Flat is the lowest elevation point in Death Valley. It has an elevation of 282 feet below sea level, which is the polar opposite of Charleston Peak, the highest peak in the Mojave Desert. Even though Death Valley has a low point, most parts of the desert are 2,000 and 5,000 feet above sea level.

The Mojave Desert and its surrounding valleys east of the desert are often referred to as low desert regions while those west are often referred to as high desert regions.

8 Kelso Dunes Rise Above 600 Feet In The Air

Kelso Dunes in Mojave Desert

This amazing dune system jumps up more than 600 feet in the air, with hefty golden rose quartz particles on top. It is an isolated mountain range in the Mojave Desert. The sand was likely brought by southeast winds, then blown off of the Mojave River sink. The color of the Dune sands is created from particles of gold because of how pure and smooth it is due to how finely grained it is. The unusual sight is actually made up of many sets of smaller dunes stacked on top of each other, because climate change produced drier conditions for storms to form, a lot of sand came from the east side of the Kelso Dunes.

These dunes were created as grain-sized sediments washed away from the northeast side of Soda Lakes and Silver Lakes. Surprisingly, a booming sound was produced when this dune system slowly moved up steeply. In some years, the mile-long dunes provide a nice spring wildflower bloom. Historians learned that this unique valley has a surprisingly complicated history; researchers found that huge amounts of sand were needed to build Kelso’s delicate wind-made sculptures but archaeologists studying this region discovered that no new sand enters into these valley regions due to a long history of climate change.

Within the Kelso Dunes according to scientists, there are several layers within each desert screen which indicate recent climate change patterns had shown there’s been natural acceleration as well as different age groups.

This small suite was built in five different pulses across 25,000 years without any new sand moving in to replenish them! Within these silts from past drought periods is revealed a rich treasure trove of natural history.

9 Lava Tubes

Lava Tubes In Mojave Desert

Despite the typical association of volcanoes being high peaked domes, sometimes their most wondrous geological contributions are hidden below our feet. Proof of this can be found at this subterranean site in Mojave National Preserve, where a trail that traverses black, tar-like rocks leads to a lava tube. A set of metal stairs lead down into an underground tunnel formed by molten lava. After descending, explorers find themselves in a dark cavern and dust glints in the beams of light that shine through the holes in the ceiling.

These natural skylights form spotlights which cast light upon the quiet space. Entering the tube allows for an up-close encounter with a fascinating volcanic phenomenon. If you touch the walls you’ll feel molten lava on which it was hardened after cooling; providing a tactile reminder of both its volatile past as well as how recent it is compared to other natural phenomena.

The lava tube was formed when melted basaltic lava flowed across the landscape, oozing outward and spilling out onto surrounding areas, just like melting butter; lava didn’t stop flowing until 10,000 years ago.

10 The Mojave Lies In The Four States

Mojave Desert

The Mojave Desert is an area of the southwestern U.S. characterized by vast, desolate landscapes and little aerial change in elevation. The Mojave Desert is a vast desert made of desolate landscapes that spans over the southwestern part of the United States.

The area covers large parts of the state of California and the state of Nevada, as well as smaller parts of states Utah and Arizona. so it’s on the border of four different states in total.

11 Mojave’s Animal Life Is Filled With Terrifying Creatures

Wildlife In Mojave Desert

Desert life is filled with scary creatures, but some just look terrifying. One of these creatures you might find wandering around the Mojave Desert is a camel spider. It has ten hairy legs and can be identified by its oversized appearance and fearsome jaws. However, they are harmless to humans – also known as “wind scorpions” – usually seen running up to 10 miles per hour. Another animal you might find in the desert is a short-horned lizard.

With its two horns on the tip of its head and greenish skin, it looks more like a poisonous toad than an armored lizard. The sucker-mouthed lizard uses this scary defense when threatened by predators, puffing up its body when confronted. If the predator doesn’t get scared off by the size increase, horny toad will squirt toxic blood from its eyes if needed to defend itself.

Mojave Desert is also home to more than fifty different species of mammals, more than 200 different species of birds, more than 36 varieties of reptiles and amphibians, three species of fish, and many varieties of bugs.

12 Mohave Ground Squirrel Only Found In Mojave Desert

Mohave Squirrel In Mojave desert

Another ground squirrel species, the Mohave ground squirrel is found only in the Mojave Desert in southern California. It was first described by Frank Stephens of San Diego in 1886. The brownish-gray ground squirrel is distinctive with white eye rings and a white belly. They are 20 cm long, smaller than other ground squirrel species in Los Angeles, and live in Joshua tree woodlands, creosote scrub, saltbush scrub, and Mohave mixed woody scrub at 500-1500 meters above sea level during the dry season because they have little to eat due to the lack of seeds, fruits, and green leaves available during that time.

In addition to endemic animals on the Mojave Desert like as Mohave ground squirrels (Xerospermophilus mohavensis), Mohave tui chub (Gila bicolor mohavensis), Mojave green rattlesnake (Crotalus scutulatus and Mojave fringe-toed lizard (Uma scoparia).

13 Mojave Can Be Considered A Part Of Carbon Sink

Mojave Desert

Scientists are projecting that the global climate will continue to rise, some are looking to see how much CO2 is absorbed by so-called “carbon sinks,” like the rain-forests or seabed plankton blooms which utilize the CO2 for photosynthesis. As a result of a recent study from a team of American scientists published in Nature journal, it was revealed that the Mojave Desert has been absorbing more CO2 than expected.

The team dove into the data of 30 field studies to show that an arid ecosystem can be considered part of a carbon sink even though it does not have trees or plants.

14 Devil’s Playground Features Numerous Mountains & Dunes

Devil's playground in Mojave Desert

The Devil’s Playground lies in the Mojave Desert in the State of California, and is made up of sand dunes and salt flats that stretch for nearly 40 miles. The desert features numerous dunes and mountainous sand, as well as salt flats. The Cronese Mountains are located at the northwestern end of it.

The “playground” consists mostly of relatively flat plains except for some hills and small mountains at the northern end, where it joins up with some dry lake beds, and the Kelso Dunes nearby.

15 Popular Tourist Spot

Mojave Desert

The Mojave Desert is located in Southern California and is a very popular tourist spot. The desert has a wide variety of terrain, from high-altitude desert to sandy beaches and salt flats. The Mojave National Preserve is a large area that contains many different types of landscapes. The desert is an extremely windy place, and visitors are often blown away by the fast-moving sandstorms.

The Mojave Desert has been a popular destination for leisure, which includes playing in the Vegas entertainment industry and visiting some National Parks. You can find plenty of activities to do in the desert, including taking a trip to one of the natural deserts: Death Valley, Joshua Tree, and Mojave National Preserve.

Additionally, you can enjoy water sports such as sailing on Lake Mead, Mohave, and Havasu. One of the most impressive man-made structures within Mojave is Hoover Dam, an enormous dam withstood all tests by engineering-including earthquakes-and considered to be one of the 7 wonders of the Industrial World.”

The Mojave Desert is a great place to visit if you’re looking for a quiet getaway. The landscape is incredible, and it’s easy to see why this area is so popular with tourists.