What happened to the Chanterelles

Henry Shaw shaw4 at llnl.gov
Tue Apr 21 23:05:59 EST 1998

On 16 Apr 1998 21:34:56 -0700, rcrawfor at slonet.org (Ron Crawford)

>I live on the central coast of California and have been enjoying the
>bountiful chanterelle harvest here for nearly 10 years. This year,
>however, some of my "never miss" spots failed to turn up one mushroom
>despite well-above-average rainfall.

My goodness!!

Up here, in the Bay Area, and northward, this year was one of the best
years for chanterelles for *decades*!  From Nov to Feb., one could
wander into the east Bay hills and in an hour or two, pick more
chanterelles than one person could carry (40+lbs).  I have been
collecting chanterelles in the Bay Area since 1984, and this is
without a doubt, the most prolific chanterelle season I've ever
experienced.  I ran across numerous slopes in our mixed oak woods that
were literally paved with gold (chanterelles, that is).  Whole
hillsides were yellow -- not from fallen leaves, but from the tops of

Most people (including myself) have found that the best producing
areas this year were those areas that only produce marginally in
"normal" years, while our "best" spots produced sub-par fruitings.  

Perhaps you were looking in all the wrong places.

For an additional take on this subject, see the article "Chaparral
Chanterelles:  Some Reflections on the Current Season" in the April
1998 issue of the _Mycena News_, the newsletter of the San Francisco
Mycological Society.  (http://www.mssf.org).

Henry Shaw
Foray Coordinator, MSSF

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