Death Valley’s Sailing Stones Mystery – SOLVED!

Sailing Stones of Death ValleyDeep in the heart of the California desert lies one of the natural world’s most puzzling mysteries: the moving rocks of Death Valley.

These are not ordinary moving rocks that tumble down mountainsides in avalanches, are carried along riverbeds by flowing water, or are tossed aside by animals.

These rocks, some as heavy as 700 pounds, are inexplicably transported across a virtually flat desert plain, leaving erratic trails in the hard mud behind them, some hundreds of yards long.

They move by some mysterious force, and in the nine decades since we have known about them, no one has ever seen them move.

Until now that is!

Racetrack Playa is the seasonally dry lake (a playa) located in the northern part of the Panamint Mountains in Death Valley National Park, California, U.S.A. that is famous for ‘sailing stones‘.

One cold winter morning, when the snowmelt covered the playa, the solution to the puzzle was finally caught on film.

That kick ass photo above is by MeLastMohican. I have no idea what his real name is, but he

Article Written by
John P.

John P. is CEO of Livid Lobster and co-host of Geek Beat TV. You can also find him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.


  1. man with no name says:

    That doesn’t explain how stones heavier than cars are moved!

  2. ibanezerscrooge says:
    • ibanezerscrooge says:

      Well, maybe not you, exactly, but the guy in the video, lol.

  3. Brandon says:

    has anyone considered the rotation of the earth as a factor. i know its not the needed force to move these rocks but it could help!

  4. david says:

    but i have seen stones and trails turn at exactly 90 degrees, help me understand.

  5. Cooter says:

    Not bad! Desolate Desert, windy, cold, wet, rare and (when frozen) inaccessible! Such an event, only a patient multi-copter robot of the future will ever witness. It’s far too cold and boring for humans to wait for. This explanation makes perfect sense to me.

    Drive a round stake next to one and “anchor” it to it’s surrounding ice. Perhaps you can force a rock to pivot (attached to the ice) around the stake, leaving “proof grooves” in the mud. Just a thought.

  6. Mar says:

    Its Electric Tune! . The Area is unique electron charges can be every where in high peak mountain and surrounding area. As Electric tune resonate in appropriate frequency and the speed almost speed of light it will flood in the area by this wave. The embedded clay is acting like resistor to avoid grounding of the energy also we known that ice water is isolator also. Heating or Cooling the rock materials make the electric tune penetrates as tunneling/duality effect and charge. The Continuous of electric tune absorbed by rock it will reverse the gravitation and the force come out and make movement. First we need small lift to make a movement in any mobile to work. Did somebody test the changes in weight of this rocks?

    In Ancient history I think that whole area of Egypt is one time full of mountain peaks and Rocks. And Electric tune was flooded by the area. One depiction shown for electric tune was in dendera where snake inside the rock. Its electric tune inside the rock to releif in weights.

    Hope my theory helps!

  7. MB says:

    If the water moves the stones, then they would just be floating across the surface, not dragging. So they wouldn’t leave a trail behind, right?

    • MIB says:

      Well, no. If the water is moving fast enough, it could push it along. This isn’t speaking directly about the article, but in terms of physics, the rocks could have been pushed along by the water. And, it just occurred to me that you said floating. Forgive me if I’m mistaken, but I DOUBT that those rocks can float.

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