The skeleton of the old juniper tree, when I could wipe the sweat out of my eyes and look up past my feet, just begged to be photographed. I was walking a transect, on the lookout for lithic scatters or other signs of the bygones, holding a northing that took me right past it. Placed along in a large open grassland of cracked and dry soil, I had no idea how long its leaves had been gone. The aridity of the desert makes a mummy of everything; the silvery trunk and limbs before me were anything but recent.
I vowed to find the remains of the juniper again, a deed easier said than done in that expansive landscape. But we did.