Posted by: GeekHiker | April 13, 2010

They Say…

… the worst day fishing is better than the best day at work.

Same thing holds for photography, as it turns out.

Last weekend, with my foot still a bit sore from a hike a couple of weeks ago, I headed up near Gorman (Forest Service Roads 8N04 and 7N23, to be exact) to do a little back-country exploring.  Mostly I wanted to head up some 4WD roads to some meadow areas I’d scouted last fall that I’d hoped would have wildflowers.

There were some sections that were in bloom, though not as much as I’d hoped (and not as much as in previous years, according to another photographer I talked to), but there was a few patches here and there.

The day was cold and windy, causing the poppies to close up.  They’re rather sensitive to wind.  And cold.  And cloudy days.  Well, you get the idea.

But yellow flowers were out in bloom, and patches of lupine here and there.

So, the photography of hills covered in nothing but flowers wasn’t to be.

But it definitely beat being at work.  🙂

Gorman 01
Carpets of wildflowers near Gorman

Gorman 02
Red-winged Blackbird on a powerline above the road

Gorman 03
Multiple shades of lupine

Gorman 04
California Poppies, all closed up due to the wind

Gorman 05
The yellow flowers covered the hillsides

Gorman 06
Further up the mountain, carpets of flowers intersperse with the occasional group of pines

Gorman 07
Looking down from the ridge towards the California Aqueduct

Gorman Pano 01
Patch of flowers growing amongst the chaparral along the road


  1. Ahhh … I miss the California wildflowers. Great pictures.

  2. Beautiful, esp. the painted (by flowers) hills!

  3. These are breathtaking!! I absolutely love what you’ve captured here. My favorite is the one of the diagonal hillside.

  4. These are great photos!!! Do you make silly faces when you take photos of stuff?

  5. Beautiful!

  6. Like I’ve been panting over the years on the rockiest trails, “Hiking on the steepest trail is still better than doing almost anything else in the world.”

  7. The lupine have been on a bunch of my hikes this year, I love them. Nothing like Ive seen up in San Ynez though, where the hills are purple because of so much lupine.

  8. found your wonderfull sight via a search for red rocks. pics and stories are great! on a serious note: i wonder if you know that the 4wd roads at red rocks could be shut down by the California Parks dept? many of the great dirt roads that haunt the mojave are in danger of being closed. visit my wordpress sight for more info and i hope i can use some of your photos there!

  9. These are GORGEOUS! Definitely better than work!

    Though I uncovered a way to be outside AND work this week.

    There is a park nearby with a large shaded pavilion. I just noticed they have OUTLETS. With the broadband card, the electrical outlets and the perfect amount of shade to ensure I could still see my screen, I have been able to rack up a few billable hours right next to a lake! 🙂

  10. I hope you don’t consider those bad photographs? Maybe it was just bad conditions while shooting – but those pics looks great to me!

  11. Those photos are fantastic! So much better than being at work. I think the closed up poppies have a beauty of their own.

  12. Homer-Dog – They can be spectacular. No wildflowers on the prairies?

    K – Thanks; imagine what a banner-year looks like!

    Spleeness – Aw, shucks, thanks.

    MissMcCracken – Uh, no, not really…

    Mel Heth – Thanks!

    Derek – True! Except maybe a good beer. 😉

    Jean – Lupine photograph great, and I love the fragrance. I’ll have to get up to San Ynez at some point, obviously…

    Tim – I have heard about that; my understanding is that it is still up for debate by the State. As for the photos, please contact me directly regarding their use on your site.

    TGAW – I… um… kinda hate you now. In the most friendly way, of course. 😀

    David – The photos are okay, but they’re snapshots rather than great photography. The wind and the flat lighting didn’t help matters much.

    Dingo – They do have a certain charm in their shyness…

  13. AWWWW…..I miss the orange poppies!

  14. Bummer, I make silly faces when I’m working on my paintings. I was hoping other people made silly faces when they were concentrating…

  15. “my understanding is that it is still up for debate by the State”

    yes, state parks dept is looking at red rocks with an the goal of closing dirt roads. contact them here if you want to let them know you use the dirt roads:

  16. beautiful. simply beautiful.

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