Ranunculus occidentalis. Buttercup family. This plant is low to the ground at 15" high. The flowers are about 1" in size and shiny yellow in coloring. They bear 5 petals and branched stems. The leaves are identifiable by their serrated 3 lobes. This patch of flowers was growing to the side of the trail.
I found this one pretty quick because of its bright yellow color. It was near most of the trails in open spaces.
Ranunculus occidentalis (western buttercup) is a species of buttercup found in the western United States and Canada. Its distribution extends from Alaska through British Columbia and Alberta to central California. The flower can be seen in open meadows, forests, and other generally flat areas up to an elevation of 2,200 metres (7,200 ft).