Dean M. Chriss
Desert Aspens, Tsegi Canyon, Arizona
(Click image to enlarge)
The word "desert" does not conjure up visions of a place where aspens grow, but in Tsegi Canyon at Navajo National Monument groves of them flourish. The narrow and deep canyon provides the cooler temperatures and moisture that aspens require, just as it provided them to the Kayenta Anasazi who lived and grew crops here more than a thousand years ago. This image is unusual because the trees were located directly beneath the canyon rim from which they were photographed. The background is actually the canyon floor. A long focal length, in addition to being required to closely frame the trees in the deep canyon, compresses the perspective of this image.
It makes the tall trees appear relatively normal even though they were photographed at a very steep
angle from above.