Teddy Bear Chollas in the Sonoran Desert

 Date: 01-Feb-2015 Category:

Teddy Bear Cholla Cactus at sunset


Teddy Bear Chollas (Cylindropuntia bigelovii) are a native species of the Sonoran Desert that extends from northern Mexico up to the southern parts of California and Arizona. The spines of this Cholla Cactus are about 1 inch long (2,5 cm) and backlight makes them look even more fuzzy, just like a "Teddy Bear". The translucent nature of the spines help them glow amazingly as soon as the sun is low enough just like on this month's picture.

As in winter 2013/2014, we spent again the last days of the year and the first days of the New Year in the US Southwest. This time we started in Central CA (New Year's Eve in San Francisco), after that we stayed at the Pacific Coast for a while (Monterey Bay, Big Sur, etc.) and then we moved on to Death Valley National Park, Oatman (absolutely loved the wild burros!), Sedona (we never can get enough of those Red Rocks!), Kofa Mountains (that's where we took this Teddy Bear Cholla image!) and Anza Borrego State Park. And after that we returned to the coast again and spent several days at San Diego/La Jolla. We enjoyed lovely spring temperatures as well as maaaany great sunrises & sunsets. This one in the Sonoran Desert - taken in mid January - might be one of our favorites.


Image data: 1/8 s at f/16, ISO 200; Canon EF 24-105 mm, 1:4 L IS USM at 67 mm, Canon EOS 5D Mark II