Connectivity to Crystal Cove State Park is just one of the reasons Bommer Canyon is a hub of summer activity. Open daily, the Bommer Canyon trailhead is the gateway to a unique open space landscape, summer camps, and an expansive trail system that helps connect the mountains to the sea.
Hughes has led programs in Bommer Canyon since it opened for public access, and has seen the area evolve from its origins as a cattle farm to its current state of natural health. Widespread weed removal has allowed native plants to thrive, and trail systems have been improved to support surrounding habitats. Grassland, oak woodland, and coastal sage scrub habitats are all found in Bommer Canyon.
Irvine Ranch Conservancy helps manage the Irvine Open Space Preserve, which includes Bommer Canyon. Part of that management includes routing trails that allow for sustainable access to this natural playground without harming sensitive habitats that support local wildlife. This means that the natural beauty of Bommer Canyon will remain for generations.
“Bommer Canyon is a special place, and I understand why people want to be out there,” says Hughes. “The Conservancy and City of Irvine partner to advance a land management strategy that ensures the land will be protected, so that the kids that enjoy summer camp there today can take their own kids there in the future.”
Summer camps operated by the City of Irvine in Bommer Canyon introduce kids to the open space in their own community. The former cattle camp becomes an outdoor classroom, with trails serving as the backdrop for learning about dinosaurs, birds, bats, reptiles and science. The cattle camp area of Bommer Canyon is also a popular summer event space for everything from weddings to corporate events.
Start a summer tradition that begins in Bommer Canyon. With so many options in one scenic spot, you’re sure to find your own favorite part of this unique section of the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks.