Joshua Tree National Park. Copyright © Dustin P. Smith. Image used under Creative Commons 2.0 License.

Joshua Tree National Park in southeastern California was declared a U.S. National Park in 1994 when the U.S. Congress passed the California Desert Protection Act.  It is named for the Joshua tree forests native to the park.  It covers a land area of 790,636 acres, with 429,690 acres designated as a wilderness area.  Straddling the San Bernardino County/Riverside County border, the park includes parts of two deserts, each an ecosystem whose characteristics are determined primarily by elevation: the higher Mojave Desert and lower Colorado Desert.  The Little San Bernardino Mountains run through the southwest edge of the park.  (Source: Wikipedia, Image: Justin P. Smith)

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