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Rasor Road

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Rasor Ranch

 
 

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Mojave Soda Dry Lake
Located off of ZZYZX rd.
Rasor Road OHV

 

Look down the valley to the southwest and you'll see the white, mirage-like surface of Soda Dry Lake. Playa lakes are among the flattest landforms in the world. They form under arid conditions when water drains into basins with no outlet to the sea and quickly evaporates. Soda Lake lies at the terminus of the Mojave River. In wet years, the playa contains standing water. In drier times, water may lie very near the surface of the playa. Capillary action draws the water upward where it evaporates, leaving a white, puffy crust of evaporate minerals such as sodium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate.

During wetter climates, the playa lake basins of the Basin-and-Range province were filled with perennial lakes. At least twice, from 18,000 to 16,000 years ago and from 13,700 to 11,400 years ago, a long-lived lake, Lake Mojave, filled Soda and Silver Lake playas. Lake Mojave dried out by 8,700 years ago, becoming the playa we see today.

Soda Lake gets its name from the soda deposits found on its surface. Soda, in actuality, is a combination of various salts/ions (I.e. sodium, calcium, potassium, chloride, and carbonate) that are beneficial to humans. About 100 years ago, people began various attempts at extracting the salts from the lake bed. A fresh water spring, located at ZZYZX mineral springs, was used as the water source for these various undertakings.

Playas

A playa is a dry, vegetation-free, flat area at the lowest part of an undrained desert basin. It is a location where ephemeral lakes form during wet periods, and is underlain by stratified clay, silt, and sand, and commonly, soluble salts. Playas occur in intermountain basins throughout the arid southwestern United States. Although playas may appear as featureless plains, they are rich in features and characteristics that can reveal information about climates, past and present. Many playas in the Mojave region were the location of lakes and marshes during the last glacial period. These perennial water bodies completely dried up about 8,000 years ago. Today they flood only after seasonal storms provide flashflood waters, or in some cases, springs discharge large quantities of groundwater onto the playa.

Soda Lake (wet)
Winter storm precipitation results in increased water discharge onto Soda Lake from one of several springs near Zzyzx, CA (photo by Dave Bedford, February, 2001).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 
 
 Rasor Clean Up

First Rasor Road desert clean up.

 
 
 
Classifieds

Free offroad and OHV classified ads.

 

Fallen Friends

Don - Keeper of the Rasor Ranch

 

 

 
Cool Forums
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 Historic Points

Rasor Road Mega-phone / the Mojave desert mystery

Desert grave of Delores Holland at Rasor Road, Near the old RR town of Crucero

Mystery jet fighter fuel tank found at Rasor Road

Old wells at Rasor Road

Soda Dry Lake off of Zzyzx Road at Rasor Road California Desert. The Mojave Road crosses though it.