Quiz: What USA Location Looks Like Snow but Registers 131 Fahrenheit? - Updated

whitelead

Question: What western American location looks like an Artic snowscape but is actually 131degrees fahrenheit? Write in comments if you know the answer to this quiz…..

Clues to follow….
whitetemp

It’s just after midday on June 21, 2013. For the last twenty minutes I’ve driven through a blinding-white landscape extending to some 275 sq. miles. Even through dark sunglasses the brightness burns my retinas. As I sit in the cold interior of a 2014 Mercedes E-Class all my senses are saying, “Arctic - Drive carefully it might be icy”. Then I stop and open the door. Within seconds the reality hits home. It’s hot - No, not hot, but boiling hot. I glance at the dashboard temperature gauge….. 131 degrees fahrenheit!
Is such a temperature even possible? I know pilots are told to ‘believe your instruments’ but, surely, this time the gauge must be wrong. So, despite the heat, I grab my cameras and venture into the bleached-out landscape. My subject being the white Mercedes-Benz convertible you see here.
The trip from my SoCal home has put around 800 miles on the odometer. A days drive. My location is a National Park and I’ve come here as a stop-over on my way to an assignment for Automobile Magazine in Northern ?. This morning I ate breakfast surrounded by strange creatures.

More clues coming….
whiteroad

After 15 minutes shooting I have to stop and retreat back to the air-conditioned car interior. If any more pictures are to be taken today - Then they will be taken at, or after, sunset…..
And what a sunset - Recent wild fires in neighboring states have created a dust layer which turns the sky pink as the sun touches the horizon.

This assignment is scheduled to be published in Automobile Magazine with a cover date of November 2013 (Available from September 26th).

Answer: Location is White Sands National Park, New Mexico. See more high-resolution photographs here.

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