Today is my late husband Jack’s birthday and I always try to spend it in a remote, amazing location to honor him. The Racetrack Playa at Death Valley National Park is such a place. I rented a Jeep because to get to the Playa required driving on a 28-mile stretch of “road” that was basically just large rocks. It took me over three hours to get there but I had the place to myself all afternoon and all night. I didn’t even see the usual coyotes who stop by to see what I’m doing when I’m out shooting at night. The moving stones on the playa are a mystery and Jack would have loved that. The theory is that the wind blows them and creates the tracks when the dry lakebed is covered with ice. It was indeed very windy but some of the stones are quite large. I set up a timelapse video to see if I could capture anything but of course, there was no ice so nothing could be seen moving. It is a magical place, especially in winter when there are no tourists around disobeying the clear signs to “not walk on the playa when it is wet.” The horrible footprints of past transgressors are everywhere and definitely ruin the experience. But I was lucky and the dry lake bed was exceedingly dry. I loved having the place to myself and enjoyed watching the sun set then see the night sky turn on all its glory. I have never seen so many stars and I couldn’t help but thinking that Jack would be happy I was sharing his memory with this beautiful place on his birthday.