It’s Wild Flower Season: Diamond Valley Lake in Hemet, CA

The Poppies and other wild flowers at Diamond Valley lake are terrific right now.  The problem is the people are not.  The wild flower trail is closed this weekend because people are “trampling” the flowers trying to get selfies and family photos, even after the being told “to stay out of the flowers.”  It was appalling to see,   Anyway, if they open up the trail again, this is what you might see.

We really wanted to get the flowers with the lake in the background.  We were also pleasantly surprised at the variety of flowers on the hills.  It was not just Poppies.  Finally, remember to have a wide angle lens, a macro lens, and a telephoto.

Try a variety of apertures on your wide angles to see how sharp you want the background and decide later when you can see it on a big monitor.  I liked some at f/16 and others at f/3.5.

Remember to also get tight and close-up.

Here is what NOT to do.  Please don’t be these people.

This is a group leaving as they were told to “get out of the flowers.”
This is THE PROBLEM. That whole area has been trampled by people laying in the flowers.
This is what trampled flowers look like and they don’t recover.
Shame. Shame. Shame. Shame.

We arrived around 8 AM.  The parking lot was nearly empty.  It was still too cold for the poppies to open, but there was plenty to see.  The poppies opened up around 10 AM and we left by 11 AM.  By the time we drove out, the parking lot was almost full AND there were over 70 cars lined up to come in.  Crazy.

To see more of (and buy) our photos, please go to



  1. Seattle Park Lover

    Argh! I hate it when selfish idiots ruin things for everyone! Emphasis on the selfish part.

    Beautiful examples of the wide variety of approaches there are to take in a single photo op.

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