My husband and I went on a search for wildflowers yesterday. With the exceptional amount of rain California has received this winter, there is hope that this will be a tremendous year for Spring Wildflowers. I had really wanted to go to Death Valley, everyone is talking about a possible “super bloom” in the desert this year, but it is a 6 hour drive, and really requires a 3 day weekend, which I do not have access to.
After doing some research, I discovered the Carrizo Plain National Monument, which is about 60 miles west of San Luis Obispo, on the Central California coast. I had never heard of this place, but I am always up for an adventure, so off we went.
The Carrizo Plain is the largest native California plain left. It runs along the San Andreas fault. I told my husband, as we were driving through, that we were basically at “Ground Zero” if the “big one” came. He was none too happy with that little piece of information.
It was simply beautiful scenery. So stark and desolate on the surface, but teeming with birdlife and surrounded by hills coated with brilliantly colored carpets of wildflowers. I saw happy cows – we have “Happy Cows” in California. Shoot – I’d be a happy cow if I could look at that scenery all day.
I climbed up a steep hill overlooking Soda Lake, and listened to a guy who works for Microsoft talking to several Mennonite men about computers, Apple and IBM. I guess he was the one who had parked his Tesla down at the bottom of the hill. It was kind of weird though, because here I am out in the middle of nowhere, listening to Meadowlark calls, while a man from Microsoft talks to a guy dressed like a pioneer, about computer companies. I felt like I was in the middle of a Bergman or Fellini film, because as I am listening to this, while getting into awkward positions in an effort to capture the perfect photo of the wildflowers, I see a huge group of women in bonnets and long dresses strolling down the boardwalk that extend to the shore of Soda Lake.
Honestly, I was so disoriented by the contrast, I really was half-expecting to see a line of covered wagons coming across the plain.
It was a most enjoyable little adventure. I felt refreshed and rejuvenated upon returning home….flowers make me happy.