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Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve comes alive in April

Desert in bloom
Desert in bloomReka Peti-Peterdi

California is like a gorgeous flower. Its picturesque beauty, vivid colors and wonderful natural shapes fascinates everyone. The California poppy is a majestic, inspiring beauty. It grows wild throughout California. This delicate, bright flower was designated as the official state flower of California in 1903. Usually the Poppies are in full bloom in March and April. The intensity of colors vary from year to year. The blooming of this orange colored flower attracts numerous visitors from the nearby states.

Orange beauty
Orange beautyReka Peti-Peterdi

California poppies bloom all over the state. The blooms comes only if the weather cooperates. Hunt for orange poppies in April. Thanks to recent heavy rains in Southern California, the bloom is already much better than the last two years. Right now, the poppies are located mostly along the trails. The hills are still green with patches of nice poppies around the park, no carpets of orange yet. The peak is typically mid-April. Most likely the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve will come alive in about two weeks. For photographers, it is always a good idea to check the weather forecast before arriving, taking colorful photos and exploring the State Natural Reserve. The poppies open up nicely when the weather is warm and sunny. They curl up if it’s windy and cold. It is useful to have a jacket.

Hours of operation: The park is open from sunrise to sunset daily.

Parking Fees:

$10 per vehicle

$9 per vehicle with a senior on board (62 and over)

$5 per vehicle with DPR Disabled Discount Card (see below)

Location - Directions:
The Reserve is located 15 miles west of Lancaster at 15101 Lancaster Road.
From Highway 14: Take the Avenue I exit and head west 15 miles. Avenue I becomes Lancaster Road.
From I-5: Take Hwy 138 east and turn right on 170th Street West. Make a left at the end, onto Lancaster Road. Follow the road two miles.
Latitude/Longitude: 34.72482 N, 118.41271 W