For many years rain in California was so scarce that the sound of it was almost foreign, and on those rare occasions when we did have a rainy day my kids would look out in confused wonder. Photos of rivers and lakes with noticeable signs of recession were circulating on the internet, having a green lawn was basically a crime, and running out of drinking water seemed a very real possibility.
Then, in 2017, we had a huge amount of rainfall, which went a long way toward alleviating the drought, and rain falling from the sky no longer seemed to cause widespread panic and confusion among native Angelenos. Another positive side effect of all that rainfall was something known as a super bloom.
What is a Super Bloom?
A super bloom is an explosion of wildflowers that exceeds the normal for a given year. A number of conditions must come together to create this phenomenon, with heavy rainfall playing a large part.
As I mentioned California had been experiencing extreme drought conditions, and prior to the super bloom in 2017 it had been more than a decade since anyone had seen a bloom season quite that spectacular.
Where Can I see the Super Bloom in 2019
We’ve had a lot of rain in California again this winter, which means that many places are experiencing or will experience a super bloom within the next few weeks and months. There are a number of places known for their flower viewing accessibility, however it’s a good idea to check the flower forecasts before heading out.
Did you know that the poppy is the official flower of California?
While there are many different species of flowers blooming some areas have greater concentrations of specific flowers.
Walker Canyon, located 85 miles south east of LA, just outside of Lake Elsinore, is a great and very accessible place to view this year’s poppy super bloom. The trail is considered moderate, but we saw plenty of families, on-leash dogs, and people of all fitness levels. Strollers and wheelchairs can be pushed on the lower main path, however some of the trails further in are quite steep.
In 2017 we visited the flower fields in Anza Borrego: Exploring California from Sand to Sea
Tips & Advice:
This should go without saying, but please be respectful when visiting the flowers. Stay on marked pathways, take anything you bring in back out again, and pick up after your pets.
- The poppies are closed in the early morning and will close up again at dusk, or in extreme cold.
- Lots of people want to see these beautiful blooms, so I suggest going early, and be prepared for extreme traffic, or If possible visit on a weekday for less congestion.
- There are parking lots, but we chose to park along the road and walk.
- Bring water. There were two food trucks selling water and snacks at the trailhead, however there is no guarantee they will be there everyday.
- Wear proper shoes and attire. The trail is wide and flat, but it is steep.
- Don’t walk on the flowers! I know it looks like we are sitting and standing in the flowers, but this is an illusion we created using camera angles. We are actually sitting on bare dirt between patches of flowers. Wear something you don’t mind getting dirty.
- Sitting or standing on the flowers, or even on areas that once had flowers could damage the flowers and leave bare areas for years to come.
- Most people stop almost immediately upon arrival to take photos, so If you don’t like crowds, and believe me there will be crowds, keep walking, it will thin out.
- We lost count after seeing 100+ dogs, but thankfully there was no poopie on the trail. Thank you friendly dog owners!