Science: Man in a Hurry

(See Cover)

Deep in the Mojave Desert, across the San Gabriel Mountains and 70 miles inland from Los Angeles, lies a strange, unnatural lake. It is eleven miles long and four miles wide, with clearly defined shores and what look like beaches. But, except for a short time after a rare desert rain, the lake has no water. Its smooth and precisely level surface is cement-hard dark-red mud. Its one surface craft is a weathered wooden dummy battleship, built long ago as a bomber target. Above it, in the bright desert sky, thunder the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!