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Wildflowers and National Parks: Where Can the Best Displays Be Experienced?

What national park offers the best wildflower displays?

The question arose after seeing the lovely image below, a sunrise view of penstemon catching dawn’s early light at Crater Lake National Park.

The scene was captured by Dennis Frates of Wilsonville, Ore., earning him the title of International Garden Photographer of the Year for 2013. His photo is the overall winner in an annual UK-based contest featuring landscape and garden photos.


Image by Dennis Frates. Visit for more information about International Garden Photographer of the Year.

Here in the states, wildflower shows served up in parks and wilderness areas can stir the soul. Three favorite national park wildflower destinations of mine:

1. Grand Teton
2. Mount Rainier
3. Canyonlands (after a wet winter)

A nonprofit group organizes an annual Great Wildflower Pilgrimage in Great Smoky Mountains National Park (the 63rd edition runs April 23-27 this year), and Shenandoah National Park will host its annual Wildflower Weekend May 4-5. Spring wildflower displays can be outstanding at parks such as Acadia, Redwood, Saguaro and Zion.

Below is a garden of lupine I captured late last summer on the east side of Mount Rainier. When the topic is wildflowers, what national park pops into your mind?


East of Indian Bar, east side of Mount Rainier. (Photo: T.D. Wood)

Posted on at 9:45 AM

Tagged: Photography, national parks and wildflowers

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so good view, wow.

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Second Grand Teton. Been there in the bring many many times and it's almost impossible to not find an alpine meadow in full bloom (with the Grand in the background, of course).


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