Walk among wildflowers: Guided hikes ring in spring at South Yuba State Park | TheUnion.com

Walk among wildflowers: Guided hikes ring in spring at South Yuba State Park

The South Yuba River roars with recent snow melt for hikers visiting the wildflowers along the Buttermilk Bend Trail near Bridgeport. Guided wildflower walks begin March 19. See page B1 in today's edition for more on hiking and the Outdoors.
The Union file photo


WHAT: Guided wildflower walks

WHERE: South Yuba River State Park - Bridgeport

WHEN: March 9-May 12 (Rain may cancel)

TIME: 10 a.m. Saturdays and 11 a.m. Sundays

INFO: http://www.SouthYubaRiverStatePark.org or 530-432-2546

When spring arrives in the Nevada County foothills many welcome its arrival with a walk among the wildflowers at South Yuba River State Park.

Docents will provide guided wildflower walks beginning Saturday, March 9, and will continue every Saturday at 10 a.m., and Sunday at 11 a.m., through May 12, a news release states.

The walks and blooms are at the whim of Mother Nature. Rain may cancel. Call 530-432-2546 for information.

The Buttermilk Bend Trail, which winds above the wild and scenic South Yuba River, is highly regarded for the many species that bloom on its hills and slopes. Each season observers are delighted with an ever-changing tableau of spring color.

Early season walkers may find Western Buttercups, Zigzag Larkspur and Shooting Stars. By mid-season, the hills usually turn gold and purple with Tufted Poppies and a variety of lupine. Mid to late season floral treats can include Fairy Lanterns, Chinese Houses and Birds-eye Gilia. Docents will share facts, legends and the many uses of the flowers and plants along the trail.

Docent-led hikes last about 90 minutes. The Buttermilk Bend trail is an easy 2-mile hike out and back. Meet at the trailhead in the South Yuba River State Park north parking lot. Follow Pleasant Valley Road north past the Visitor Center over the South Yuba River. Parking is $5. Sturdy walking shoes, hat and water are recommended. A $3 donation is requested and appreciated. (Dogs are not permitted on the guided walks as the trail is narrow and the groups can be large.)

To make a visit complete, a picnic lunch and time to take in the park Visitor Center is suggested, as well is checking out the covered bridge (while is it under renovation) and barn (both built in 1862) and the restored 1920s gas station.

The Visitor Center is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Thursday through Sunday until Memorial Day and every day from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. starting Memorial Day weekend. Available there is a collection of wildflower books educational and souvenir items. (And perhaps a bottle of water you forgot to bring for the hike.)

For more information, call the park at (530) 432-2546, or go to http://www.southyubariverstatepark.org.

Source: South Yuba River Park Association

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