Thursday, April 8, 2010

antelope valley poppy reserve

We've been on quite the wildflower kick this year. After our little jaunt to Anzo-Borrego, we couldn't wait to pounce on the California poppy season, which is supposed to be spectacular. We'd heard the blooming season is just a few weeks, and the flowers aren't always consistently bountiful, so we tried not to get our hopes up too much. But after seeing so many photos, we couldn't wait to see them for ourselves.

We drove about an hour north of Los Angeles near Palmdale, to the Antelope Valley Poppy Reserve. And oh my was everything I dreamed it would be! Carpets and carpets of poppy fields set against snow-capped mountains (or mountains covered with yet more wildflowers) and blue blue was ridiculously, perfectly beautiful.

We walked through about six miles of hilly terrain, covering just a small part of the 1200 acres dedicated to poppy preservation. We didn't see any rattlesnakes, antelope, or owls, but we did spy a coyote, many lizards, and the occasional song bird. Being there felt like we were miles and miles away from civilization.

I took literally hundreds of photos, but am enclosing just a few below for your viewing pleasure. (Click on the images to enlarge.) I have to confess that, although I'm generally very careful about only taking petals and flowers that have naturally separated when we go on these excursions (more on that in a later post), this time around I did pluck some flowers that I'd smashed when we sat down. Okay, when we lay down on the grass...I just couldn't resist. I mean, it's a poppy field! I got sleepy. Or just drunk with beauty.

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