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Eschscholzia californica


Field of California Poppies

After a wet winter, such as this has been, there is a brief explosion of bright orange for a few weeks in the Spring. Don’t worry: It’s not Donald J. Trumpf. It is the California Poppy (Eschscholzia californica) in all its glory. Today, my friend Bill Korn and I went to the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve in the high desert valley running east and west between I-5 and California 14. We took separate routes and arrived there within fifteen minutes of each other.

The California Poppy is the official state flower of California: It is considered an offense to pick any of them. They are truly lovely, though, and the Poppy Preserve was crawling with thousands of people who came out to wander in fields of flowers. There were one-hour lines outside the bathrooms and the portable toilets.

We took several trails and saw the pointillist dots of bright orange extending in several directions.

Poppy Fields with San Gabriel Mountains in Background

I’m happy that I was able to work only half a day doing taxes before making my getaway. It was a good day!

2 thoughts on “Eschscholzia californica

  1. I measured our little hike with Google Earth. I make it about 1.7 miles, with a maximum altitude change of 88 feet. That doesn’t sound like much, but the altitude did tend to change suddenly, and everything seems longer/steeper when one is in the sun, even though it wasn’t hot.

    By the way, I took the direct route home, via SR 14, the Angeles Forest Highway, and the Angeles Crest Highway. It was gorgeous. I was slightly baked after our sojurn in the sun, but the temperature in the mountains was in the low- to mid-60’s. So I arrived home all cooled off.

  2. Sounds good. I went back the same way I came, via SR 138 and the I-5/I-405 combo. That was nice too, but not so cool as your mountain route.

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