Each spring, the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve comes alive with the seasonal surprises of the Mojave Desert Grassland habitat. The duration and intensity of colors and scents vary from year to year. The wildflower season generally lasts from as early as mid-February through late May, with a variety of wildflowers creating a mosaic of color that changes daily. Eight miles of trails through the gentle rolling hills, including a paved section for wheelchair access, make the park a wonderful place to hike and explore any season. Get away from the city and relax in the quietude of the countryside, with only the birds singing and hawks gliding silently overhead. Benches located along the trails make good places to sit quietly and watch for wildlife, such as singing meadow larks, lizards zipping across the trail, gopher snakes and rattlesnakes. If you're lucky, you may spot a coyote or bobcat. Numerous burrows around the trails may house mice, gophers, kangaroo rats, beetles, scorpions, or others. The Antelope Valley is located in the western Mojave Desert at an elevation ranging from 2600--3000 feet, making it a high desert environment. This State Natural Reserve is located on California's most consistent poppy-bearing land. Other wildflowers: owl's clover, lupine, goldfield, cream cups, and coreopsis, to name a few, share the desert grassland to produce a mosaic of color and fragrance each spring. As unpredictable as nature - the intensity and duration of the wildflower bloom varies yearly. California State Parks does not water or use any other means to stimulate the flowers; the land is preserved to only be influenced by the natural forces that had once influenced all of our surroundings. The broad views of this landscape provide eyefuls of brilliant wildflower colors and fragrance. Whether you most enjoy expansive fields or the close-up study of a single flower, this is the place to visit. Open sunrise to sunset.

Had to make my way here during the tail end of the superbloom. Unfortunately it was very windy that day so most of the poppies were closed up. I did find a few patches of open poppies along the way but they were few and far in between. Wish I had come mid March to see the fields encompassed in them. Came here around 7am and only one other car was there.

walking
1 month ago

I went a couple of days ago and arrived pretty early when most of the poppies were still closed from the cold night. Walked to the second vista and enjoyed the views and on the walk back the poppies were open and gorgeous. SUPER windy so I would recommend no hat and lots of sunscreen instead. There are a lot of people if you just do the short loop but you can get a little bit less of a crowd if you go to the vista points.

walking
2 months ago

Beautiful views throughout. Flowers are blooming. Birds and snakes are active during the day.

Easy hiking trails on gentle slopes covered in California Poppies and other flowers in early spring. It's very popular and easily accessible from LA; if you don't want to wait in a long line to park your car, be sure to arrive by 10am.

hiking
2 months ago

Nice place, windy day, almost gone with wind.

hiking
2 months ago

This year's abundance of rainfall has allowed for an amazing display of wildflowers here are poppy reserve. The downside of this was the huge amount of visitors it has attracted. We arrived just after 8 and the parking lot was already full. By the time we left around 10:30, the reserve was overwhelmed with visitors. Many people unfortunately ignored the signs to stay on the trails and trampled the poppies in order to get their selfie or next Facebook profile pic. All in all, a very enjoyable hike with the abundance of poppies. Once the poppies have died, nothing else really here to see.

hiking
2 months ago

Went on weekend of 4/2/17 - Constant gusty wind really dries you up so bring plenty of water, lip balm, and sun protection! I got really burned even though I put on sun block. If it were not for the wind it would have been too hot so it's great for our very long hike. We parked 2 miles out from the main parking lot instead of sitting in the car an hour waiting to get into the lot. But the lines for the ladies room was an hour long wait at the visitor's center. Needless to say the view was worth it especially from up high.

Absolutely stunning fields of poppies this year! Great trails. I recommend though if you want beautiful pictures to drive down the side roads before the state park for the best views b/c the poppies are most vibrant this way. You can walk off trail outside state park just be courteous to nature and don't step on any poppies. For more trail info check out my blog post: http://www.fruitstandfresh.com/antelope-valley-boasts-vibrant-super-bloom/

on Antelope Loop Trail

2 months ago

Super windy. Next time I would bring more layers and a hat or beanie.

walking
2 months ago

Great hike. Easy, groomed trails, beautiful scenery!! Go early to beat crowds, wind and heat! $10 parking fee but you can find trailheads off the main road to avoid paying the fee.