Walker Canyon in Lake Elsinore was the home of the poppy super bloom for 2019, and by now, you have no doubt heard all about this amazing natural event. For those that haven’t, the fields of Lake Elsinore, along the popular Walker Canyon Trail, are basically covered in orange poppies for as far as the eye can see. Because of this, it has become a hugely popular tourist destination that people are driving from all over to visit. If you want to check it out, I recommend going early and on a weekday as the weekends are crazy busy, and you can read about it below.
- Free to enter
- Sunrise to sunset
- Don’t walk on the flowers, stay on the trail!
- Poppies usually only bloom for a few weeks, but it depends on the weather as rain can prolong the bloom and heat can shorten it.
- See up to date info on the City of Lake Elsinore Instagram here
- This information was from the super bloom in 2019
Here is a video of my time exploring the area.
Getting to Walker Canyon is something that is constantly changing with the number of people coming and the city trying to control the traffic as best as they can. When we went, we got off on Lake St. and turned right (away from the entrance since the parking was packed there) and then parked on Temescal Canyon Road. The city is planning not to allow anyone to get off on this exit starting the weekend of the 23rd (2019), as they are requiring visitors to take a $10 shuttle. I would recommend visiting the city’s Instagram here to see the current situation.
After parking, we walked the half mile or so back under the freeway and over to the Walker Canyon Trailhead.
The full hike here is about 3.5 miles round trip, but you can hike as little or as much as you would like.
Most people hike less then a half mile in, so if you hike more then that, you will be away from a lot of crowds.
Also, the views keep getting better and better as you head back. There are a few mountains near the power lines that are literally covered in orange.
I would also recommend taking the spur before you get to the power line area (this is an established trail) as it will give you a great, high vantage point of the area.
It is steep though, so know that going in and take your time.
Once you get to the top, you will have some fantastic views of the surrounding mountains before you head back down the way you came.
We only explored for about 2 hours, and when we were leaving at 10:30 AM, the freeways were massively congested just to get off (I heard that they even close the exit when it gets too bad). It is an amazing experience and something that you should check out if you can, but if you go follow these tips:
- Get there early (I would say before 8:30 and even earlier on the weekend).
- Follow the City of Lake Elsinore on Instagram as they post the most recent updates on the trail.
- Stay on the trail, please don’t damage the poppies for Instagram likes.
- Be patient; everyone is dealing with the same lines and traffic you are, be kind to each other and enjoy this wonderful event.
Let me know if you get a chance to go in the comments.