Joshua Tree Nights

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A True Joshua Tree Story:

So. There I was in Joshua Tree National Park. I was parked in a turnout just before sundown, organizing my photo gear for a night of photography. Thousands of distinctive Joshua Trees (actually a form of yucca) dominated the location in every direction as far as the eye could see. While I was mentally reviewing my nighttime shooting checklist, I noticed a car driving slowly past me. I heard a car door close and looked around to see a couple of guys approaching.

Slightly suspicious and not knowing what to make of the situation I said, “Hi!”

“Do you know where this road goes?” one of them asked.

I got out my map and showed them where we were, where they were headed and what their options were. I gathered they had entered the Park at the west entrance a few hours before and were on an unplanned sightseeing drive for the day.

“Do you guys have a map?”

They shook their heads. “No.”, thinking, then… “Can we have yours?”


I remembered I had an extra map and gave it to them. It’s never a good thing to be driving around blind in the desert, especially since it would soon be dark. They were thanking me for the help when another man got out of the same car and joined us. He had a question that the others were interested in as well…

“Which ones are the Joshua Trees?”

“Uhh…” I restrained myself from my natural inclinations to sigh heavily, roll my eyes or just laugh out loud. I simply pointed to all of the trees around us.

“Ohhh!” … They seemed delighted!

It occurred to me that every one of us who visits new and different places like Joshua Tree, shares the collective experience of seeing it for the very first time. These guys were no different and I’m glad they made the effort.

All Photographs © 2015 John Grusd Fine Art Photography. All Rights Reserved.


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