Claret Cup in Bloom near Monument Valley. Actually, to be more precise here, I’m willing to assert that this might be the “world’s biggest” patch of claret cup cactus; it’s certainly the largest one I’ve ever seen by far. It’s in Mystery Valley, a lesser-known but equally beautiful area just south of Monument Valley in far northern Arizona. I photographed it with an ancient Anasazi ruin in the background (barely visible in the sandstone cave under streaks of desert varnish) during a springtime trek to the Navajo Nation in May, 2019.
Tech info: Nikon D850 camera with Nikon 17-35mm lens at 20mm, 1/40 sec. at f11, ISO 250. A vertical panorama made from three focus-stacked images masked and blended in Photoshop.
Image ©2020 James D. Peterson