While we were all watching the Anza-Borrego "super bloom," a field of wildflowers closer to home has burst into spectacular color.
The iconic orange flowers at the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve have come into bloom. The poppies suddenly popped open last week all over the Antelope Valley, according to California State Parks. While the agency suggests that the park won't be covered by a solid carpet of poppies, the current state of the bloom is already better than previously expected.
The poppy bloom is expected to get even better in the coming weeks, with peak bloom expected to stretch across late March and early April. With more rain due on Wednesday and consistently cool temperatures, the bloom could even last into mid April—assuming a sudden heat wave doesn't scorch all of the flowers like last year's short-lived bloom.
Before you head out to Antelope Valley, just keep in mind that the Mojave Desert can have drastically different and unpredictable weather compared to L.A., so you’ll probably want to bring a sweatshirt along to the often windy area. Also, the park has already been drawing in huge crowds to see the bloom, so approach it with a bit of patience.
The on-site parking lot ($10) often fills up early on weekends. If you're parking on the street along Lancaster Road, make sure not to trample any poppies. And similarly: Don't pick any poppies.
The Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve visitor center is open sunrise to sunset and is located north of the intersection of 150th Street West and Lancaster Road in Lancaster.
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