North of the town of St. George, Utah, the big draw in Pioneer Park was the Narrows, a slot canyon. I watched while two youngsters squeezed through the stone passage. Their father stood by and encouraged them, then climbed around the rocks to meet them on the other end. I too declined to go through and worked my way back out through a line of kids that had formed, waiting to sidle through.
The park is home to the Red Hills Desert Garden, the first of many cactus and arid landscape displays for me on this road trip. This area, Washington County, sits at the intersection of three major ecoregions—the Colorado Plateau, the Great Basin, and the Mojave Desert—creating a unique and diverse habitat for plant and wildlife.
I’m drawn to the close up shapes, the patterns in the plants, the curves and the shadows.
And who knew there were so many types of prickly pear cactus?
Trails around the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve wind around red rock shapes. I wasn’t able to spot the Mojave desert tortoise, who was probably hiding somewhere in the shade, well away from the trail.
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