Posts Tagged ‘california desert’

Dunes of the Mojave Desert

August 2, 2010

Mojave Desert Dunes

If someone were to mention dunes in the Mojave Desert, Death Valley’s Mesquite Dunes at Stovepipe Wells would come mind first for some people. The Kelso Dunes might even come up. There are more dunes out there that in lie outside of the National Park and Monument boundaries, you just need to look a little further. With all the dry lakes out there the sand has to blow somewhere.

Dunes in black and white

Some dunes fields are extremely small and others such as what is shown here are significant in size. Many dunes are similiar and usually can be identified with the mountain back drop if there is one.

OHV use in designated wilderness

These dunes are designated wilderness where people may seek desert desolation but I have come across people ignoring the desigated wilderness boundaries with OHV use. I can imagine how dificult it can be trying to protect something out in the middle of nowhere. It would be nice if there were signs posted with violation fee amounts in all parking areas near wilderness areas.

Mojave desert dunes

Frost covered dunes in the Mojave Desert

Frost covers the dunes during winter in the early morning. Sometimes solitude comes with no foot prints.

Moon and dune

If anyone is interested in a private or small group workshop between the late fall and early spring please email me via the contact page on my website.

Joshua Tree’s Cacti Bloom

April 9, 2010

For a short period of time the harsh extremes of the desert do not and exist and life florishes. If you drive into Joshua Tree’s south entrance you can’t miss the painterly scene along interstate 10. A painter must have painted the desert yellow, the brittle brush line both sides of the highways at points. At a 65 mile per hour glance I could make out beavertails blooming along with ocotillos and some arizona lupine here and there.
You can see all the brittle brush here in the background behind me here . I just met Jon Cornforth the current Outdoor Photography Magazine cover shot photographer earlier this week. Pretty hospitable guy, he was nice enough to share his I-phone shot. Hopefully I can meet up with him again after I get back from Northwestern Nevada. The photo shown was taken just outside the park’s south entrance.

Here are a few of the blooming cacti and yucca from the past couple of visits to Joshua Tree. They are all blooming now so it would a great time to stop by, especially if you’re conveniently located on the east side of Los Angeles. If you happen to smell a skunk while you’re out there it might just possibly be the breeze and the smell of an abundance of wildflowers.

Blooming hedge hog cacti
I found these in both the Mojave and Sonoran sections of the park.

Mojave Mound Cacti
I found these mojave mounds at the foot of boulder piles in the main northern section of the park.

The beginning stage of a joshua tree blooming
The joshua trees are in full bloom right now. This one is just at it’s beginning stage but you’ll find many in full bloom.

Beavertail Cacti
The beavertail cacti can grow to the size of a large ice chest with mutliple flowers on them.

Mojave Yucca
The mojave yucca, whew! In my own opinion these can be some of the most beautiful yucca blooms around.

This should give a photographer plenty to capture in Joshua Tree besides just boulders and joshua trees. If you still need more just remember the park is made of mountains, washes, tanks and palm oasis. Get creative and come up with something you didn’t think you would leave with.