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Arizona is one of the few privileged places in the world where giant Saguaro cacti grow. They can live hundreds of years and will be here long after I am gone. This is my happy place, a special spot in a remote area of Honeybee Canyon. It is peaceful, but not quiet. The sounds of Mourning Doves and Quail break the silence. Snakes and lizards are stirring. Coyotes are on the hunt for unfortunate Jackrabbits and other unsuspecting prey.
This is a wild place nestled within a community which values protecting our wilderness for future generations. It can only be reached by venturing off the beaten path. You have to know how to get here, or be lucky enough to simply stumble upon it. I've been here many times before, during different seasons, at different times of day. The light and color is always changing and it never disappoints. Because this is in the Sonoran Desert, even before the sun bakes the landscape, the temperatures can be hot.
This day was no exception. This time I arrived before dawn and I was treated to catching this golden sunrise. The soft rays backlit the leaves on the Mesquite trees and warmed the rock formations and desert flora. I was blessed to be able to hike among these giants just as the fleeting rim light outlined their prickly forms creating a golden glow. It makes me happy to be able to share it with all who are not able to witness this place of wonder in person. I hope this image takes you somewhere you have never been and perhaps inspires you to visit this beautiful state.
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Dimitri Vasileiou • Editor