West facing canyons of the Sierra Nevada mountain range are prime spots for wild flora, especially in Springtime. Lots of rain means a great show can usually be found. Rivers exit the mountains and carve deep into the landscape. Lush green hills, oaks, boulders. Perfect picnic spots everywhere.
make a whole day of it
Lower elevations bloom first in the year. Remember if the Central Valley is blooming fruit trees, the mountain foothills are starting up too. Mid-elevations, above 3000′ bloom in summer months, but below that – plenty of river canyons and reservoirs are superb locations to search for wild flowers.
The steep Eastern Sierra canyons near US 395, do have some wildflowers in Spring. Rocky, higher elevations bloom in mid-summer. And what Eastern Sierra lacks in wildflowers, they make up for in Autumn Colors (best in the state)
Kern River Canyon
- Lower Kern along Old Kern Canyon Road
- Upper Kern, just north of Kernville, CA
- NFS Gold Ledge Campground – Giant Lupine
Kings River Canyon
- Hwy 168 @ Tollhouse Road
- Maxson Road to Pine Flat Reservoir
- Blackrock Reservoir
- Big Creek Rd. Sierra Forest Road #9 – Sierra NF
California: Gold Country Foothills
Consumes River – East of Coloma, CA
New Melones Reservoir – near Angeles Camp, CA
American River Canyon – Hwy 49, South of Auburn, CA
Northern Cal: Wildflower Areas
Yuba River along Hwy 20, up to Grass Valley, CA
North Table Mountain via Cherokee Road – N of Oroville, CA
the epic volcanic tablelands of Butte County.