Domeland Wilderness may be named for its many dome-shaped bedrock formations, but it is also famous for having a wide variety of beautiful wildflowers. Dozens of colorful wildflower varieties bloom throughout Domeland’s 94,695 acres of wild, untamed land. Domeland follows the 7 principles of Leave No Trace, so picking the flowers isn’t allowed, but for wildflower photographers and sketch artists, this wilderness provides a fantastic opportunity to see many different colors and types of wildflower firsthand.
A visit to one of Domeland’s many gorgeous meadows is not to be missed. Manter Meadow, which is reachable via several of the hiking trails, is particularly famous. Another trait of Manter Meadow that makes it famous is that in the July of 2000, a raging wildfire started there and swept through the Domeland wilderness. The Manter wildfire, as it came to be known, took twenty days to put out, and during that time it scorched down over 74,000 acres of Domeland.
While this may sound like a bad thing, for lovers of wildflowers it’s quite the opposite; wildfires burn away dead plant material, essentially cleansing the area for new plants to grow in. This is exactly the case in Domeland, where the areas that the Manter wildfire affected produce explosions of spectacular wildflowers during the spring and summer. The Domeland wilderness is well-known for having scorching hot summers, so plan to visit some other time of the year; spring is ideal for witnessing the new growth of wildflowers that arrives with warmer weather.
Different flowers grow in different areas, but you can expect to find many of the following varieties during your visit: Shooting Stars, Purple Nightshade, Indian Paintbrush, Mustang Clover, Larkspur, Phlox, Prickly Poppy, Pride of the Mountains, Wallflower, Yarrow, Wild Onion, Pussy Paws, Wild Rose, Snowplant, Scarlet Gilia, Buttercup, Phacelia, Blue Dicks, Monkeyflower, Penstemon, Geranium, Creek Dogwood, Lupine, and Prickley Pear Cactus.
Motor vehicles are not allowed in the wilderness, nor are mountain bikes, so your travel options are to hike on foot or to ride a horse or burro. Pack your camera, sketchbook or both and enjoy a day in wildflower paradise. You can also stay overnight or plan an entire vacation around the area. There are several vacation rentals and hotels to chose from.