Rocks Moving on Their Own? – The Mistery of Death Valley

If somebody asked you whether the rocks can move on their own or not, you’d probably think they’re joking, right?

In fact, for the stones in Death Valley, taking a stroll once in a while is perfectly normal.


Apparently, the Racetrack Playa from the Death Valley National Park of California has been hosting an incredible event for a very long time: sailing rocks. More precisely, stones as heavy as a regular adult (or even heavier) crawling randomly through the desert for hundreds of feet.

The first time this strange event was noticed was in 1915, although it may have been happening for much longer. Ever since, various specialists in the domain (as well as amators) tried to explain the strange event, which seems to happen irregularly every year.

So far, theories regarding the outer space are the most popular – and even though the UFO ones are unlikely to be true, there is one interesting discovery.

In 2006, a NASA researcher named Ralph Lorenz was looking into other planets when he made a connection between a moon and Death Valley. Titan, the moon of Saturn, seems to present the same weather conditions. After a series of experiments, he concluded that a combination of water and sand covering a large amount of ice can, actually, make the rocks move “on their own.” Another influential factor could be the wind, although scientists are skeptical that air currents could make such heavy stones move.


Regardless of how logical are the explanations and experiments shown by scientists worldwide, people still seem to prefer the mystery. Even though it’s been over a century since the first studies on sailing rocks began, the world thinks of them as one of the unexplainable events of the Earth.