2014 Hite Cove Trail

Description: A late April hike along the Hite Cove Trail, widely known to be one of the premier places in California for viewing wildflowers.

The Hite Cove Trail begins about 21 miles east of Mariposa and 11 miles west of the Yosemite Arch Rock Entrance along highway 140. The trail winds along the hillside, just above the south fork of the Merced River for about 4.5 miles. We hiked ~2 miles to where the trail descends to the river at the canyon bottom. Elevation gain/loss along this trail is low though there are enough rolling ups and downs to keep the hiker engaged. But most hikers won't even notice the actual trail as their attention will be diverted to the colorful patches of flowers either up the hill on their left or down the hill towards the river on their right. But do pay attention on the narrow trail, especially while moving aside to allow others to pass, lest you accidentally step on an encroaching flower or worst yet, slip and fall down the steep slope to the river.

It was several weeks past the peak blooming season for most of the plants yet the floral display was still pretty spectacular in my opinion. Our pace was slow since I stopped to photograph each flower species that I saw. In the end, I managed to capture over 25 and spent many post-trip hours dredging the internet to identify each. Results of my best efforts are posted atop some of the following photos but please beware that accuracy is not guaranteed.

Mustang Clover


Tufted Poppy


Monkey Flower?


Chinese Houses


Another Mustang Clover variety?


Aster


Blue Dick's


Bolander's Woodland Star


Caterpillar Phacelia


California Thistle


Pretty Face


Purple Owl's Clover


Indian Pink


Fiesta Flower


Live Forever


Live Forever


Indian Rhubarb


Indian Rhubarb


Globe Lily


Indian Paintbrush


Wallflower


??


Foothill Sunburst


Twining Snake


Mountain Daisy


Harlequin Lupine


More flowers to come


Hillside of poppies and other wildflowers


South fork of Merced River