Carrizo Plain National Monument is located 100 miles north of L.A. and just west of Bakersfield CA. Click here to view a map and get driving directions. The goal for this trip was to capture some of the spring California wildflowers. When looking up places to visit I found Carrizo Plain National Monument. The wildflower season this year is off to a slow start. We have had a bunch of rain but also cooler weather. The sun came out and warmed up for a few days so I thought maybe the flowers would start to blossom. Well yes and no. Carrizo Plain National Monument and the outlying foothills where covered with Yellow Coreopsis but the golden poppies have yet to bloom. According to Antelope Valley Poppy Reserve website it doesn't look to be a good poppy year. In any event my goal for the day was to go find some flowers and find flowers I did. While traveling on HWY 166 east, I found the outlying foothills were covered with yellow flowers. It's a sight to see! Upon arrival at Carrizo National Monument you can tell the flowers had yet to fully bloom. Half way through the monument there was a turnout with a field of the Yellow Coreopsis in full bloom and that's this weeks post picture. It was a little windy, but it was also sunny enough to allow for a fast shutter speed to help freeze the action of the blowing flowers.
Carrizo Plain National Monument is a good place to camp, hike, and enjoy the wildflowers. I recommend a wide angle lens for the vast landscape but also bring a telephoto for the different species of birds and animals. Although I didn't see any Prong Horn Antelope I did see several antelope crossing signs so I assume there must be antelope running about. I didn't use my tripod on this trip but I would bring it if you are staying for sunset. Also check out Soada Lake. It's full of water but from what I am told, during the summer months it's similar to Badwater of Death Valley.
Take a look at Carrizo Plain National Monument for a good view of the California wildflowers and California wildlife. The drive to the monument is beautiful as well so be prepared to slam on the brakes, pull over and snap a few shots.