Last weekend, a couple of us went to Daffodil Hill in Volcano California. This little gem sits in the Sierra foothills and is about 73 miles from South Lake Tahoe. It was absolutely beautiful!
Daffodil Hill is a brief event, lasting for a few weeks in the spring when everything is in bloom, usually mid-March through early April. It’s a great day trip and worth the drive. Plus you can travel via Highway 88, through Carson Pass and by Kirkwood, which is always fun.
Daffodil Hill is actually a working ranch and has been since the 1870’s. The original daffodils were planted by Dutchman Pete Denzer, in remembrance of Holland. In 1877, he sold the property to Arthur and Lizzie McLaughlin. The McLaughlins continued to plant daffodils, as have their descendants, including the children, grandchildren, great, great great, and great great great grandchildren. An average of 16,000 daffodil bulbs are planted each year. With all those people planting all those bulbs over all those years, the hillside is a visual tapestry during the blooming period. The planting beds surround the original homestead and there are gold rush era mining equipment and antique farming tools in the mix, in addition to peacocks, two miniature donkeys and a horse, Hannah. Pathways meander up and around, giving a great view to the blooms. The admission is free, along with the parking. Community service groups has concession stands at the entry, food, postcards, etc. Several picnic tables are by the entry for those who want to hang out and eat.
But when it’s over, it’s over. We were there on a Saturday. Sunday a big rain and wind storm came through, knocked off all the blooms, and whammo, it closed. And the next day it went to back to the working ranch that it is.
Daffodil Hill is located at 18310 Rams Horn Grade, Volcano, CA. During the spring, it is opened Monday through Sunday, 10 am – 4 pm, weather permitting. If you’re concerned about whether or not it might be open before you make the drive, it’s best to call 209.296.7048.