Wildflowers by Elizabeth Lake, Antelope Valley, CA - April 2016


It had been over 5 years (!!) since I had been out to Antelope Valley to see the annual spring wildflower bloom (check out the post about that windy day here) and I was way overdue!

Even though I couldn't find someone to go with me I decided to do it anyway.

I'd been keeping tabs on the bloom by using the Southern California Wildflower Reports so I knew there'd be some blooming near Munz Ranch Road and Elizabeth Lake Road.



I didn't see many large patches of flowers as I was driving there, but as soon as I turned on to Munz Ranch Road, there they were (and lots of other people too)!

I parked and started up the hill to get a closer look. I saw so many different types - some I hadn't seen before.




After a while I headed back to my car and drove north on Munz Ranch Road. When I was researching the area I'd stumbled upon something called "Shea's Castle" that looked interesting and decided on a whim to try and find it.

Tim King - Flickr: Shea's Castle
After driving down a questionable dirt road I came across a locked gate - couldn't even see the castle in the distance. Found out later that it's a private residence. Sometimes these adventures don't work out!


So I headed back down the road and over to the Antelope Valley Poppy Reserve. I'd heard there wasn't much of a bloom this year, but wanted to check it out for myself (and use the restrooms!). They didn't even make me pay to get in because there was not a poppy in sight but the landscape was still beautiful.


I decided to head back to Elizabeth Lake/Munz Ranch Road area where I'd seen the best flowers and explore a bit more. I parked a few places and got out to walk around and see what else I could find.


Simply breathtaking!

Then I kept driving west on Elizabeth Lake. I guess there used to be a larger lake here (you could tell by the "lake front" properties) but now it's all a bit dry.


As I headed back to LA I took Lake Hughes Road which had some beautiful views of hills and Castaic Lake.


All in all, a great day exploring just a tiny sliver of what Southern California has to offer.

I was having some trouble getting my camera to focus so I don't have any flower close-ups but some of the flowers I saw that day were: California poppy, whitedaisy tidytips, Fremont's pincushion, bristly fiddleneck, strigose lotus, redstem filaree, blazingstars, cushion cryptantha, suncups, chia, lupines, lacy phacelia, bush poppy, and California evening primrose.

See more of my photos from Antelope Valley wildflowers in the Flickr album.



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