Regular flooding of evaporative layers may form a very smooth surface, as at Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah. The crystallization of these salts can be compared with the evaporation of brine in a dish. The supply of material, basin depth, and duration of accumulation all contribute to variations in the thickness of playa deposits. The precise climatic interpretation of paleolacustrine playa sequences, however, can be problematic. For thick, soluble crusts, dissolution may occur during fluctuations of a high water table. The amount of volume change varies with the clay minerals present. The salt deposits of a salt pan are zoned like bathtub rings, with less-soluble sulfates and carbonates at the outer margin and highly soluble sodium chloride table salt at the centre. Thank you for your feedback. Playas affected by occasional surface floods are usually dry.
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