30. The hottest recorded temperature was 134 degrees Fahrenheit.
Death Valley, California, is located 190 feet below sea level and averages daytime temperatures of 115 degrees Fahrenheit. For our college football fans, we’re not talking about Louisiana State University’s football stadium! The area’s name isn’t just for show, though. In 1913, it set a world record when a staggering temperature of 134 degrees Fahrenheit was recorded at a site there known as Greenland Ranch. Though that claim was later set aside as “not possible from a meteorological perspective” because it did not align with other observations made in the region, the same area recorded 130 degrees Fahrenheit in August 2020. That was just the air temperature.
Temperatures on the ground at Death Valley are even hotter. In 1972, a ground-level measurement recorded a temperature of 201 degrees Fahrenheit, only 11 degrees away from water’s boiling point. The place’s intense heat is due to its low altitude and arid climate, which averages less than three inches of rainfall per year. It sits 282 feet below sea level and is the lowest, driest, and hottest location in the United States. Though there may be hotter places than Death Valley, they are too remote for reliable monitoring – and who wants to be out in that heat, anyway?