Badwater Basin

1 min read
Badwater Basin Blog Image


In the parched expanse of North America’s driest region, Badwater Basin has defied expectations by lingering and expanding as an ephemeral lake.

About Badwater Basin

  • It is endorheic in nature means water flows into it but not out, typically resulting in rapid evaporation and ephemeral lakes.
  • It is the lowest point in North America at 282 ft (86 m) below sea level. 
  • However, increased precipitation over the past six months has disrupted this pattern.
  • It is nestled within the Death Valley in North America.
  • Manly lake was formed in August 2023 after Hurricane Hilary.
  • While the lake initially shrank as expected, it surprisingly persisted through the fall and winter months.
  • Its resurgence came in February 2024, when a powerful atmospheric river replenished its waters.
  • Death Valley’s average annual rainfall of only 51 millimetres, received a remarkable 125 mm in the last six months.

Key facts about Death Valley

  • It is located in southeastern California in the United States.
  • It lies near the undefined border between the Great Basin and the Mojave Desert.
  • Most rainfall is blocked by the mountains to the west, so Death Valley is extremely arid.
  • It is the lowest, hottest, and the driest portion of North America, noted for its extremes of temperature and aridity. 

Q1) What are Ephemeral lakes?

These are basins that remain flooded for short periods of time during a year but may not hold water for several years if the rainfall regime is not suitable to produce flooding. Filling of ephemeral lakes is episodic.

Source: The driest place in North America has been home to a lake for 6 months