The Mojave Desert (pronunciation: mo-hah-vee) is a rain-shadow, mostly high desert area, that occupies a significant portion of southeastern California and smaller parts of central California, southern Nevada, southwestern Utah and northwestern Arizona in the United States. The Mojave Desert's boundaries are generally defined by the presence of Yucca brevifolia (Joshua trees), considered an indicator species for this desert. It is the driest of the North American deserts. The desert is believed to support between 1,750 and 2,000 species of plants. (Wikipedia)
Geography The Mojave Desert is defined by numerous mountain ranges creating its xeric conditions. These ranges often create valleys, endorheic basins, salt pans, and seasonal saline lakes when precipitation is high enough. These mountain ranges and valleys are part of the Basin and Range province and the Great Basin; a geologic area of crustal thinning which pulls open valleys over millions of years. Most of the valleys are internally drained (endorheic basins), so all precipitation that falls within the valley does not eventually flow to the ocean. Some of the Mojave (toward the east, in and around the Colorado River/Virgin River Gorge) is within a different geographic domain called the Colorado Plateau. This area is known for its incised canyons, high mesas and plateaus, and flat strata; a unique geographic locality found nowhere else on earth.(Wikipedia)
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