The odd weather this year has not deterred our state flower. On the way north through Monterey county there are areas of the hills off of the 101 freeway that are more gold than green. Patches of what must be hundreds of thousands of flowers cover the crests of many foothills. There are smaller groups that have taken over rocky harsher more vertical terrain, and some even appear right out of cracks in the asphalt along highway 1. This particular beauty was close to the coast, in a spot that was quite obviously buffeted by harsh winds constantly as evidenced by the windswept cypress trees in the area. The poppies in this spot were a little smaller and more variegated than average with yellow edges. Most of them were hunkered down near the ground, but this guy caught my eye standing tall for his portrait. This is a great time of year to travel around California.