• Yaa Asantewaa Faraji

Super Bloom in the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve

The babies of the wind sprouted themselves in royal majesty this April 2019 across multiple flatlands and hillsides throughout Southern California. In response to the recent wintery gloom – where Southern California experienced record breaking rainfall averages, some of which rivaled records dating back to 1876 – the Spring season in Southern California sprouts a magnificent natural bloom.

Among the several super bloom locations to catch these blossomed sightings is the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve.

Nestled just above the 210 freeway, hidden slightly adjacent to the 5 North, you’ll find a valley of fire that gleams subtly under the rising sun.

Head out to the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve to bare witness to labored fruit of the recent ‘Pineapple Express’ winter storm. The choice is yours to idle next to the shoulder along Highway 14 – where you’ll get a good whiff of poppies sprouting – or go the extra mile to the state park entrance – just search the park in Google Maps. You’ll be greeted by the Jane S. Pinheiro Interpretive Center, where you can learn more details about the anatomy of the flower or purchase souvenir trinkets for your loved ones.

There are multiple trails spanning across seven miles of hillside – try the Poppy Trail North/South or the Tehachapi Vista Point Trail for optimal views.

The terrain itself can be misleading, the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve sits atop a desert, where Spring winds can be overwhelming – be sure to bring plenty of water, wear sneakers, bring shades, watch out for inland rattlesnakes and pack a lunch for nearby picnicking.

Southern California witnesses a ballet of bloom each year beginning mid-February to mid-May, with each year casting its own play based on rainfall levels associated. Make sure to catch this year’s historical floral display – a sight not witnessed at this magnitude since the 1800s.

For more details on the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve, click here.

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