“In every walk with nature, one receives far more than he seeks.” – John Muir
Looking for a reason to enjoy the great outdoors? National Take a Walk in the Park Day on Thursday, March 30 is the perfect catalyst to enjoy fresh air and exercise on the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks. The Mediterranean climate that occurs on the Landmarks in Southern California is found in only five locations across the globe, but contains nearly 20 percent of the world’s known plant species. With a vibrant wildflower season in bloom, there’s never been a better time to visit the lands. Register for a program or explore designated trails for self-guided access in celebration of National Take a Walk in the Park Day.
- Thursday Morning Trek: Quail Hill in the City of Irvine’s Quail Hill welcomes nature lovers to enjoy the open space preserve that was once part of the historic Irvine Cattle Ranch. Cattle grazed the lands for decades, likely transforming the original plant community and introducing many non-native species. The hike travels roughly 7.5-miles with an elevation change of 1,700 feet, and is a great way for hikers ages 12 and over to enjoy on the lands on National Take a Walk in the Park Day.
- Slow-Paced Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road offers beautiful views of the Irvine Open Space Preserve and OC Parks’ Limestone Canyon, where California poppies and blue hyacinth are in bloom. This reoccurring evening fitness hike is a wonderful opportunity for nature lovers with busy daytime schedules to enjoy the great outdoors on National Take A Walk in the Park Day. Trekkers will walk along a paved road that winds through stunning rock formations and wildlands, and culminates with a vista at Loma Ridge.
The above guided programs are a great way to enjoy the lands on National Take a Walk in the Park Day, and there are also several designated trails open for self-guided access as well. Specific trails in Bommer Canyon are open from 7 am to Sunset, creating opportunities for early morning walks and lunchtime strolls. Buck Gully in the City of Newport Beach also offers flexibility with self-guided access from sunrise to sunset, where many bush sunflowers are in bloom and native birdlife flies overhead.
Visit the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks on National Take a Walk Day and all throughout the year. All activities are free with required pre-registration, which closes at 4 p.m. the day prior to each event. Some programs are suitable for children 10 and over, and children must be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian. For more details on programs on the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks visit LetsGoOutside.org/activities.