The playa is a thick bed of moist clay-type mud covered with a very thin layer of salt. It surrounds Floating Island, turning than mountain into an island of sorts. I am lying on it in a frustrated attempt to seel Enlightenment.
The day’s exploration had two goals: to reach the top of Floating Island’s south summit (“because it is there”) and the end of Floating Island’s southwest “finger,” a low peninsula jutting into the playa. I reached the south summit and the end of the finger, and headed back to my car via a direct route on the playa.
During that walk I laid down on the mud to see if I could meditate my way to an Exhalted State of Awareness so that I would have something interesting to report about the trek. Unlike my similar attempts on Moabian sandstone (see other photos) I was fighting an uphill battle all the way, as playas are not psycoramic. My effort was in vain.
Throughout this long, frustrating episode, my camera was held absolutely still by Joe Tripod, who accompanies me on hikes for this type of documentation. His sense of duty in the most challenging situations gives me the strength to soldier on in times of such disappointment.
In the background is a portion of the Silver Island Mountains. That range is a neighbor of Floating Island. Geo-tagging is approximate.