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The Racetrack Playa must first fill with water — deep enough to float massive sheets of ice, yet still shallow enough to leave the rocks exposed. Nighttime temperatures must then get cold enough to freeze the water, forming mammoth-size ice panes — thin enough to glide across the lake bed, yet thick enough to gain momentum and clear the stones in their way.
As the next day’s afternoon sun thaws the ice, these sheets break apart into chunks that, with any luck, a steady wind will propel across the playa pool. When the ice chunks hit the rocks — ranging from pebble to boulder-size pieces weighing up to 200 pounds – the stones are driven across the soft mud below, leaving behind their signature trails.
When the ice chunks hit the rocks — ranging from pebble to boulder-size pieces weighing up to 200 pounds – the stones are driven across the soft mud below, leaving behind their signature trails.
originally posted by: mOjOm
I've always wondered why they don't put some cameras out there watching some of the stones with motion detection and some atmospheric equipment and so forth to monitor conditions. Then, once one of them started to move, the conditions are recorded and the rock is filmed moving visually.
You could just leave the stuff out there for a year with minimal upkeep and wait for results. Wouldn't cost much either. Maybe stick some GPS trackers on them too.
This seems like something that could be solved by now without much work involved and with the video evidence and other data to show what's happening.
originally posted by: sn0rch
Well if you watched the video, you'll see the footage of them moving...