lake with Chihuly glass and Koi in Columbus, Ohio
Mono Lake is a large, shallow saline soda lake south of Reno and east of Yosemite in California. It was formed 760,000 or more years ago in a basin that has no outlet to the ocean. This fact causes high levels of salt to accumulate. The very weird rock forms are called tufas (too'-fahs). Tufas are formed of limestone in an uncommon way. There is a reaction between the lake water, rich in carbonates, and water from underground springs rich in calcium. Calcium carbonate--or limestone--is thus formed. The limestone precipitates out of solution around the springs forming towers over a period of many years. These towers grow exclusively underwater. So many can be seen today because of water diversion from the lake.
Lower Grinnell Lake as seen from the trail to Grinnell Glacier. Glacial flur (flour), a suspension of fine particles of limestone ground by movement of Grinnell Glacier, causes the lake water to be turquoise.
Dale Chihuly website
blog post with photo of Upper Grinnell Lake and Grinnell Glacier
map of Grinnell Glacier hike
I'm linking up with my favorite teacher, Ms Jenny Matlock, as we work our way through the alphabet. Please do go visit the other students, for you never know what gems you may find--humor, poignancy, information, visions of far away places, stuff you've never even dreamed of! Check it out HERE. You may even wish to join in yourself! This week our letter is "L."
photos by me © 2005, 2008, 2009 all rights reserved