Since moving to the Southwest, the Mojave Desert has been a source of both fascination, interest and inspiration for my photography. Despite its sometimes barren appearance, the Mojave Desert is actually a rich and diverse ecosystem that takes up parts of four U.S. states. Here are some fun facts about the Mojave Desert:
- Where is the Mojave Desert? Most of the Mojave Desert is located in southeastern California and southern Nevada. Smaller portions exist in Utah and Arizona. It occupies approximately 43,750 square miles between the Great Basin Desert to the north and the Sonoran Desert to the south. It is defined by geographic location, elevation, geology and unique plants.
- What is the Mojave Desert famous for? The Mojave Desert has the hottest air temperature (134 degrees F) and the hottest surface temperature (201 degrees F) ever recorded on earth. Both of these records were established at Furnace Creek in Death Valley.
- What does the Mojave Desert look like? The Mojave Desert has a typical basin and range topography with sparse vegetation. Elevations are generally between three thousand and six thousand feet. Death Valley is the notable exception with Telescope Peak rising more than 11,000 above the valley. Death Valley also has the lowest elevation in the United States; 282 feet below sea level at Badwater Basin.
- Although the vegetation is usually sparse, wildflowers can abound following the brief rainy season. There are few trees in the Mojave Desert with the notable exception being the Joshua tree. This unusual relative of the yucca grows only in the Mojave Desert and only at the higher elevations.
This gallery contains some of my favorite Mojave Desert images that are available as downloads and fine art prints. To view the gallery, click here or on the photo collage above. When you are in the gallery, click on a thumbnail to enlarge an image. To navigate the images click on the arrows. To see the captions click on the (i) symbol.