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Is It Too Late to Save the Bonneville Salt Flats?

Racers and government agencies are cooperating to keep racing on the Bonneville Salt Flats, but you can’t blame everything on potash mining.

In pre-historic, pre-human, and pre-Bonneville Speed Week times, there was a body of water in western Utah known as Lake Bonneville. It was huge. If you look up at the mountains surrounding what are now the Bonneville Salt Flats, home of the greatest land speed racing the world has ever known, you can still see ancient shorelines hundreds of feet above the burning white flatness. Then, 16,800 years ago—geologists are very precise on this—something let loose and almost all of Lake Bonneville drained out into what is now southern Idaho.

This was both good and bad. Bad if you were an ancient dino-shark eating as many fish as you felt like eating all day long only to find yourself in what would become an Idaho potato field (oh, how the mighty always fall!), but good if you were a land speed racer… read more >

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