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Indian Wells Valley is an arid north-south basin in east-central California. In the geologic sense, it is a southern extension of Owens Valley to the north, with the recent volcanics of the Coso Range being the separator. It is defined by a major fault on the west side of the valley. Unlike Owens Valley, it is bound by a fault to the south, the Garlock Fault (within the El Paso Mountains). This valley is part of the northwesternmost Mojave Desert plant community and ecoregion.

Indian Wells Valley
Indian Wells Valley, showing Ridgecrest, California and the China Lake area.
Length33 miles (53 km) N-S
Borders onArgus Range (E)
Coso Range (N)
El Paso Mountains (S)
Sierra Nevada (W)
Coordinates35°42′10″N 117°41′11″W / 35.70278°N 117.68639°W / 35.70278; -117.68639Coordinates: 35°42′10″N 117°41′11″W / 35.70278°N 117.68639°W / 35.70278; -117.68639

The largest city in the valley is Ridgecrest. Other locations include Inyokern, Indian Wells, and communities associated with the China Lake Naval Weapons Center, the primary industry in the valley. California State Route 14 and US Highway 395 are the main transportation corridors through the valley.

External linksEdit

  • "Indian Wells Valley". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2013-01-17.
  • Groundwater Quality in the Indian Wells Valley, California United States Geological Survey
USGS diagram showing the groundwater basins of Owens and Indian Wells Valleys