A glimpse of Spring,
of fields of yellow mustards,
and patches of bright orange poppies,
to lift the spirits & cheer the heart!
3/29/2020 update: All 280 California State Parks have now been temporarily closed to vehicle access to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Please check the park website for future updates.
In dire need of anxiety-relieving activities after almost three weeks of social distancing, Ken and I went for a short drive recently to Mt Diablo State Park to see if Spring wildflowers have arrived. We were curious to see if the vast poppy fields that we found there last year have reappeared. See the poppy fields from my post here! Since it’s a very big park (over 20,000 acres), we knew that we would be able to find some places inside where we would not be close to others.
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Early Spring at Mt Diablo State Park
It was a beautiful Spring day at the park, with lush green fields, colorful wildflowers, and trees starting to leaf. We saw beautiful fields of wild yellow mustard interspersed with purple lupines, and numerous bunches of bright orange California poppies along North Gate Road. While we didn’t see the large fields of poppies that we saw last April, it was still a beautiful, cheerful and magical sight. If possible, we hope to keep checking for more poppies in the coming weeks!
Our trip was definitely the highlight of our week. It forced us to do something other than scroll through the news all day, and being in nature itself felt so good! It was a much needed couple hours of anxiety relief, mental wellness and vitamin D that’s important for keeping our immune system strong.
We did see a few other individuals and small families in the park, but not too many, and we all made sure to maintain our distance. Everyone was very friendly and waved from inside their cars. Ken was in noticeably higher spirits during and after the outing, so for that, I’m grateful!
Being avid photographers, we brought our cameras and were happy to capture some scenes from the beautiful Spring day. All photos below were captured with a Nikon D750 with a 50mm lens, available from Amazon.
Grow Your Own Wildflowers!
If you love poppies and wildflowers as much as I do, why not grow some of your own in your backyard like I did? We scattered some seeds randomly a couple years ago, left them alone and now we have bunches of bright orange poppies throughout the yard every Spring! They didn’t necessarily grow where we expected them to, but we’re not complaining! The Wildflower Company sells wildflower seed packets for different regions of California, including a California wildflower mixture that includes poppies, and a Napa Valley wildflower seed mix that also includes poppies.
My Photography Gear
I love the art of photography and I love being able to capture the beauty from my travels both near and far. Here’s a quick list of the equipment that we used for this photo shoot:
Nikon D750 – a fantastic full-frame camera and one of the most economical ones on the market today.
Nikon 50 mm f/1.4G Lens – my go-to lens for portraits and for general photography.
Nikon Micro 105 mm Lens – this macro lens is my favorite lens – it’s super sharp and has great bokeh.
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