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Soda Lake and Painted Rock on the Carrizo Plain
Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

The Carrizo Plain, despite its elevation of about 2000 feet (600 meters) is very flat, and most of it drains inward to a shallow intermitent lake. Lakes with no outlet, known as endorheic lakes, concentrate minerals present in local waters, and end up either as salt lakes or salt flats.

The Soda Lake probably dates from the end of the Pleistocene, when the climate became drier and warmer. Its size varies dramatically from year to year and between winter and summer. The water and dry-lake deposits consist mostly of salt with sulfates and carbonates.

Carrizo Plain National Monument
Wikipedia: Soda Lake (San Luis Obispo County)

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Soda Lake overlook at the north end of the Carrizo Plain

Soda Lake overlook at the north end of the Carrizo Plain

Soda Lake overlook at the north end of the Carrizo Plain

Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Date photographed: March 20, 2005
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Boardwalk at the edge of the Soda Lake

Boardwalk at the edge of the Soda Lake

Boardwalk at the edge of the Soda Lake

Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Date photographed: April 27, 2003
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Spring flowers south of the Soda Lake

Spring flowers south of the Soda Lake

Spring flowers south of the Soda Lake

Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Date photographed: March 20, 2005
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The old Selby Ranch, Carrizo Plain

The old Selby Ranch, Carrizo Plain

The old Selby Ranch, Carrizo Plain

Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Date photographed: April 27, 2003
See location in Google Maps

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