California’s Death Valley approached record-breaking temperatures in July, drawing a crowd of excited tourists and even park rangers — but commenters on a highly-viewed Reddit post were much more unhappy with the event.
The post, which was shared on r/facepalm, is a photo of two smiling park rangers next to a large thermometer display that showed the park’s temperature as it hit 132 degrees. The post’s caption read, “This is like dinosaurs having their picture taken with an asteroid.”
The National Park Service lists Death Valley National Park as the largest of the national parks outside Alaska at over three million acres of desert and salt flats. Yahoo News reported that it’s widely considered the hottest place on Earth, with a record high temperature of 134 degrees measured in 1913.
The average temperature of the Earth is rising due to heat-trapping air pollution in the atmosphere. Experts predict that we may be in for the hottest temperatures in history over the next five years.
Given those conditions, it’s not surprising that Death Valley approached its record temperature again this year, falling just barely short at 132 degrees, Yahoo News reported.
Heat stress from being in extremely hot environments is dangerous. It can cause dehydration and heat stroke, as well as making existing health problems worse.
Experts predict that more and more areas of the world are going to start experiencing dangerous heat thanks to the shifting climate. While humidity paired with heat is even harder to deal with, dry heat, like the conditions in Death Valley, presents its own problems.
“I just want to know how they are smiling,” one user wrote.
“They must be some kind of superhuman to not be drenched in sweat,” another Redditor said.
“They’re not drenched in sweat for the exact same reason that makes dry heat so incredibly dangerous,” another user corrected. “Dry heat means your sweat is being evaporated instantly. It comes at the cost of just killing you from dehydration extremely fast … If you do not get shade and you do not get water, you’re just dead.”
Join our free newsletter for cool news and cool tips that make it easy to help yourself while helping the planet.