Carrizo Plain National Monument
Day Hiking and nature
Visitors to the Carrizo Plain National Monument are encouraged to stop in the Taft Chamber of Commerce and Visitor's Bureau for information, maps, and directors for visiting the Carrizo. Natural and human history in a background of scenic beauty awaits the visitor to the Carrizo Plain; however, Soda Lake, the glistening centerpiece which bisects the 37-mile Monument should be approached on Soda Lake Road, off Highway 166/33, which many say is the only reliable road into the Carrizo. The Goodwin Education Center is the best place to access information about the Plain, home to diverse communities of wildlife and plant species. The Carrizo is also important to Native Americans whose presence is especially notable in the area's Painted Rock.
The Monument is northwest from the City of Maricopa, CA, following along the San Andreas Fault Line. On the northeast, the Temblor Range can be seen. Santa Margarita and Taft are two of the known "Gateway to the Carrizo Plain."
** Wildflower Update**
#TracktheBloom: As of March 20, 2019, flowers have taken hold in the Carrizo Plain National Monument. The Temblor Mountains are yellow and the Caliente Mountains have splashes of yellow (hillside daisies).
The valley floor is turning yellow as well with goldfields and hillside daisies. Just south of the visitor center we are getting tidy tips, phacelia and hillside daisies, which make a colorful display. The monument is boasting with yellow, however we are still expecting more flowers out in the next few weeks.
REMINDER: Some roads remain impassable from rains even with warmer weather. Vehicles can easily get stuck, please follow warning signs and respect private property when visiting your public lands. This is a remote area with limited towing services, no fuel, food or water nearby.
Don’t forget to check the visitor center wildflower info line (805) 475-2035.