Ghost of Water

Everywhere you look in Death Valley, the ghost of water is revealed. The most famous sites have all been shaped by water that has come before. While water is rare in Death Valley, it is present, you just have to know where to look for it.

Ghost of Water has been released by Death Valley National Park. This is the second episode of the Death Valley Explorer series. Rio Tinto donated $50,000 to produce a documentary video series designed to engage the public in Death Valley National Park’s unique beauty and history through social media. The gift was made through the Death Valley Natural History Association to support the National Park Service in their collaboration with Bristlecone Media to produce the series.

Previously released videos produced with Rio Tinto’s donation were: Death Valley Exposed Episodes 1 and 2 on the subjects of the October 2015 floods and the subsequent wildflowers; as well as the first episode from the Death Valley Explorer series entitled Death Valley. A third episode on the subject of mining in Death Valley is currently in production.

Many minerals were found in the Death Valley area. One of the most lucrative was borax, made famous by the 20 Mule Team advertising campaign. Borates are an important component in many products including glass, fiberglass, ceramics, fertilizers, wood preservatives and detergents. Today, Rio Tinto supplies about 30 percent of the world's refined borates from its operation in California's Mojave Desert, one of the richest borate deposits on earth.

Rio Tinto’s commitment to environmental preservation is longstanding. In 1916, officials of the previous company helped write the language that was adopted by Congress to establish the National Park Service. The company, when later operating as U.S. Borax, also donated land holdings to the federal government and lobbied to have the area protected as a National Monument in 1933, and again as a National Park in 1994. In 2010, Rio Tinto donated an additional 110 acres and associated mineral rights to Death Valley National Park.

Since 1954, the Death Valley Natural History Association (DVNHA) has been the official nonprofit partner of Death Valley National Park. In that time, DVNHA has donated nearly $4.5 million to Death Valley National Park, supporting education, preservation, and scientific research.

Death Valley is the largest U.S. National Park outside Alaska, encompassing 3.4 million acres. To learn more about Death Valley National Park visit: or Rio Tint visit: For more information about the Death Valley Natural History Association’s programs or to make a donation, please call 800-478-8564 or visit

Contact Us

Death Valley Natural History Association
PO Box 188
Death Valley, CA 92328

1-800-478-8564 ext. 10
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