It may still be cool and rainy, but a warm spring and gorgeous wild flowers are almost a reality. This year the weather has been unpredictable for all of us and for the wild flowers on the Buttermilk Bend trail at Bridgeport. First was the lack of rain, now there is rain and cooler weather, which delayed the annual wild flower show along the South Yuba River.
Docent guided wild flower walks are presented every weekend from now until May 13th. Ruth Peterson one of many wild flower Docents says “mid April and early May will be some of the best times to see these great flowers, they are just waiting for sunshine” She said the docents expect to see; Western Buttercup, Popcorn flowers, Fiddlenecks, Tufted Poppies, Lupine, Western Redbud, Miners Lettuce and Bird’s Eye Gilia.
On Sunday, April 29th there is a double treat. Join the Docents for their guided walk, and then stay for the Spring Festival and the 150th Birthday Celebration for the Covered Bridge and Historic Barn. They were built in 1862 and this year they are 150 years old. The Celebration will take place from 11-4:00 on Sunday. Join everyone for Birthday cake at 1:30 PM just after the walks are finished.
Please pardon the construction at the north parking lot. The parking lot is being expanded with new gravel, an electrical line is being installed and new signs are going in right now. The parking lot is closed for visitor safety because of construction equipment and the work that is taking place. The upper trail is open and can be reached easily by the north east corner of the lot. Until the construction is finished the only restroom is next to the Visitor Center.
The Docent lead hikes start at 11:00 AM and last about 2 hours. The Buttermilk Bend Trail is an easy 2 mile round trip with spectacular views of the South Yuba River. Meet in the north parking lot, just past the concrete bridge which crosses the South Yuba River on Pleasant Valley road. Wear sturdy shoes; bring water, snacks and a camera. Although leased dogs are allowed on the trail, dogs are not permitted on the hike as the trail is narrow and the groups can be large. A $3.00 donation is requested. Rain may cancel the hike.
To make the day complete allow extra time to visit the covered bridge, barn (both built in 1862), 1920’s gas station and the Visitor Center. The visitor center has a great collection of wild flower books, bird books and many other education items. It is open 11-4:00 Thurs-Sundays in the spring. For more information call the park at 530-432-2546 or go to www.southyubariverstatepark.org.