Carlsbad, California, April 2013

April 1 - off to Carlsbad

Today was a two-fer. In the morning, we drove to Carlsbad and visited The Flower Fields. Then we had lunch. After lunch, we drove a short distance and then hiked the Batiquitos Lagoon trail. Then back to Poway.

Carlsbad is about a half hour from Poway. Here is a map, showing our hotel (the red light bulb) and Carlsbad in the upper left corner. The blue inlet roughly halfway between Carlsbad and Encinitas is the Batiquitos Lagoon.

The Flower Fields

This tourist attraction was mentioned in the weekend USA Today, and it sounded interesting. So we decided to check it out. You can find more at the Flower Fields website.

It is definitely a fascinating place. And we visited it at the right time. There are 50 acres of flowers, ranunculus. I've never heard of them, but here's a photo of a couple.

They are laid out more or less in huge sections of the same colour. I took some shots of the fields, but the best view was shown in this poster near the entrance. Notice the vehicles in the lower left to show you the scale.

Here are my shots of the fields (those are portapotties in the distance in the first photo):

This one shows the ocean in the distance. It was taken from the top of one of the fields.

A couple of we-were-here photos:

We observed many workers picking the younger ranunculuses (ranunculi??) for distribution to florists across the continent.

One of the cool things that they have is a Sweet Pea maze. So of course we went into it. At a certain point, Stephen and I deliberately took different paths. We could see each other clearly, but we couldn't get back together for a while.

They have a Poinsettia greenhouse, too. I wasn't aware that there were so many different colors of poinsettias.

And they had a lot of other flowers there too. Some of them I recognized. Others, well, I'm not a botanist by any means. I just call them "pretty".

Batiquitos Lagoon

A couple hundred years ago, a Spanish explorer found this place, and named it Batiquitos, after the Spanish word "batequi" which means watering hole. My hiking book mentioned over a dozen different kinds of birds that hang out here. We saw only a few.

You can find out more at the Batiquitos Foundation website.

First, the sign.

We were really close to I5 here.

The trail was really flat - easy walking, even for me.

Another view of the lagoon.

A bird.

Another bird - a brown pelican, Stephen says.

Another prickly pear cactus in bloom.

This is the Google Earth view of the hike. It is an out-and-back hike. The one-way length was about 2.7 kms.

Tomorrow, Stephen really wants to finish mapping the South Poway trail. It's our last full day in Poway, and that would be a cool accomplishment.
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