As kids go back to school and the fall season approaches, visitors of all ages can enjoy the last days of summer on the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks. Symbolizing the unofficial end of the summer season, Labor Day weekend is a great time for nature lovers to learn about their natural surroundings and gain a deeper appreciation for the land. All week long, nature lovers can take advantage of the warm weather with a variety of activities including hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding across the open spaces and nature preserves.
The following morning on Wednesday, August 29 from 7 a.m. – 12 p.m. seasoned hikers ages 18 and up can take on the steep climbs and descents in the City of Irvine’s Orchard Hills during the Mid Week Hike: Orchard Hills activity. Outdoor enthusiasts will hike 10 miles around an avocado grove and up to Loma Ridge and be rewarded with sweeping views of all of Orange County.
Kick off Labor Day weekend with Wilderness Access Day: Black Star Canyon on Saturday, September 1 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. During this program, families and seasoned outdoor enthusiasts have self-guided access through Black Star Canyon’s diverse trail network, offering both 30-minute walks on introductory trails and 7+ mile treks through challenging terrain. Hikers, bikers, and equestrians can explore the local flora and fauna while enjoying Black Star Canyon’s stunning geologic features.
Mountain bikers can explore the various trails in OC Parks’ Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve from paved Hicks Haul Road to the single track of Limestone Ridge and “The Sinks,” OC’s own mini-Grand Canyon, during the Intermediate Mountain Bike Ride from Irvine to Limestone Canyon activity. During the bike ride, trail lovers will experience panoramic views of the surrounding wildlands – even Catalina Island can be visible on clear days.
Visit the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks during Labor Day weekend 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. Remember to pack a snack, water, and wear appropriate clothing and sunscreen. Children must be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian, age requirements for programs vary. For more details on programs on the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks, visit LetsGoOutside.org/activities.