Are There Any True Deserts in the United States?

When you think of a desert, you may picture vast areas of totally barren, shifting sands. But only a small part of most deserts is completely barren.

By and large, most of the world’s deserts look just like the parts of the United States that we call deserts, with rocks, cliffs, and a great variety of desert plants. Therefore, the deserts of the U.S. are as much of a true desert as any in the world.

The biggest desert in the U.S. is the Mohave, in Southern California, which covers about 15,000 square miles. The Great Salt Lake Desert in Utah stretches over 10,000 square miles, while the Sonoran Desert, part of which is in Arizona and California, with the rest in Mexico, covers 120,000 square miles. Other U.S. deserts include Black Rock Desert in Nevada and Death Valley Desert in California.

Death Valley is the hottest place in North or South America, with the temperature there once hitting 134 degrees!