Activities and Programs

The activities below are offered by a variety of organizations and their dedicated volunteers. All programs are FREE unless noted below. Programs led by IRC-Certified Volunteers require pre-registration, which closes at 4 p.m. on the day prior to the event.  No walk-up registrations will be permitted for these events. For policies of other organizations, please use the sign-up information provided. For mobility device policies click here.

    Note: Minors must be accompanied by a parent or guardian for these events. For programs requiring online registration, each adult and child must be registered.

Need help? For the fastest answers, look for organization-specific contact information in each event listing (click More Information for full listing). If no contact information is listed, email info@irconservancy.org for assistance.

Click here to learn more about IRC-Certified Volunteers.    •   Click here to learn more about the Difficulty Ratings.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Art on the Landmarks: Painting on the Mesa

Interpretive
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Dive into the amazing array of color of the canyons on the Art on the Landmarks program. Bring along your paints, pens, pencils or pastels to create your own creation of the beautiful scenery around you. We will travel to an ideal location that meets the group’s needs for inspiration. Then, settle in and create your own masterpiece!
Art supplies nor art instruction are included so please come with your own materials and your keen eye for creation!
Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-2 activity on the land.
CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Art on the Landmarks: Painting on the Mesa
Date:
Sun, 02/19/2017
Time:
8:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Where:
Black Star Canyon Wilderness Park
Difficulty Rating:
2
Distance:
2.5 miles
Minimum Age:
10
Spaces Left:
Closed
More Information  

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Moderate-Paced Mountain Bike Ride: Fremont, Blind, Weir Canyon

Mountain Biking
Intermediate Mountain Bike Ride from Hicks Haul Road to Limestone Canyon

Experienced mountain bikers can explore one of the most rugged and remote areas of the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks from the trails of Fremont Canyon Nature Preserve on this moderate-paced ride through Fremont, Blind, and Weir Canyons. Fremont Canyon remains one of the most wild places in Orange County, with a diversity of rare plants and animals. This ride includes natural trail hazards such as sand, tree roots, ruts, and exposed rocks.  PLEASE NOTE: there are multiple very steep climbs, with an approximate elevation gain of 2,800 feet over 15 miles.  This hard ride is for adult-only riders in excellent physical condition who will be rewarded with the beautiful vistas.

Please review the Difficulty Ratings to help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-4 activity on the land.

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Moderate-Paced Mountain Bike Ride: Fremont, Blind, Weir Canyon
Date:
Sun, 02/19/2017
Time:
8:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Where:
Fremont Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
4
Distance:
17 miles
Minimum Age:
18
Spaces Left:
Closed
More Information  

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Mountain Bike Clinic – Rider Skills

Mountain Biking
Intermediate MTB Clinic

If you are new to mountain biking and interested in getting started the right way, or if you just want to hone your existing bike skills developing rider-influenced techniques to navigate your bike over common trail features and obstacles, this is the clinic for you!

Class begins with a brief overview of rider fundamentals starting with platform position and weight transfer followed by a series of exercises demonstrating rider-influenced bike maneuvers such as front & rear wheel lifts, bunny hops, drop-offs, late & emergency braking and cornering techniques over pavement, loose dirt, rocks, logs, ruts & potholes. These riding techniques will be taught and practiced at the Mountain Bike Skills Development area and towards the end of the morning, participants will enjoy a short ride into Round Canyon to put their new skills to use then wrap up by discussing trail etiquette for bikes.

This activity originates in the City of Irvine and travels into OC Parks’ Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-3 activity on the land.

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Mountain Bike Clinic – Rider Skills
Date:
Sun, 02/19/2017
Time:
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Where:
Irvine Open Space Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
2.5 miles
Minimum Age:
16
Spaces Left:
Closed
More Information  

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: YIKING: Cardio Hike and Yoga

Hiking & Fitness
4-2-2016-yiking-1

Hiking combined with outdoor yoga adds a unique dimension to your fitness experience and yoga practice. YIKING allows the spirit to link with the natural environment. There will be instructor led yoga above the scenic Avocado Orchard with the West Loma Ridge rising along side. Views of the Pacific coastline peep through the trees at the landing (elevation gain 1640′) where we spread our mats and breathe deeply. The hike distance will be 6-7 miles, making your muscles more pliable, enhancing the yoga stretches. YIKING invokes a sense of harmony and flow, as you breathe deeply, refreshing your mind, body and spirit— all in a location with sweeping views of Irvine and the Pacific coastline.

All participants must bring a yoga mat and carry it along on the hike to the hillside yoga site. Please wear clothes comfortable to stretch in. Hiking poles and sun protection are encouraged.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-5 activity on the land.

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: YIKING: Cardio Hike and Yoga
Date:
Sun, 02/19/2017
Time:
8:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Where:
Orchard Hills
Difficulty Rating:
5
Distance:
6 miles
Minimum Age:
16
Spaces Left:
Closed
More Information  

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Tales and Characters of the Santa Ana Mountains

Interpretive
history irvine ranch

On this historical hike through the scenic oaks of Limestone Canyon, join us as we move at a moderate pace and have many stops to share some of the old stories about its inhabitants. You will hear about the Native Americans who once lived there, cattle driving vaqueros, encounters with grizzly bears, early American settlers, bandits, and stagecoach robbers. Come prepared with a spirit of adventure!

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-3 activity on the land.

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Tales and Characters of the Santa Ana Mountains
Date:
Sun, 02/19/2017
Time:
8:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Where:
Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
4 miles
Minimum Age:
12
Spaces Left:
Closed
More Information  

Santiago Oaks Stewardship

Stewardship
Santiago Oaks_2785

Leave your park better than you found it! Join Irvine Ranch Conservancy staff during monthly habitat stewardship activities at Santiago Oaks Regional Park, aimed at keeping the park’s habitat healthy. Identified in collaboration with the Park Rangers that patrol the trails everyday, stewardship projects can include planting to combat the effects of hiking, biking and riding off-trail, removing invasive plant species that threaten to crowd out the diversity of native plants, and more!

No previous experience is needed, however please note that we may be hiking up steep trails.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-4 activity on the land.

Santiago Oaks Stewardship
Date:
Sun, 02/19/2017
Time:
9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Where:
Santiago Oaks Regional Park
Difficulty Rating:
3
Minimum Age:
14
Spaces Left:
Closed
More Information  

Community Day at the Back Bay Science Center

Interpretive
Interpretive

Come visit the Office of Natural Resources, Recreation and Senior Services Department at the City of Newport Beach at the Back Bay Science Center (located at 600 Shellmaker Road, Newport Beach, CA 92660) every Sunday from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. to experience the beauty of Upper Newport Bay while browsing a research and education facility! Explore tidepool touch tanks, observe coastal bay and estuary birds, or examine some biofacts in the Teaching Lab. No reservations are required for this free event and it is open to all ages. For any questions, please contact marineeducation@newportbeachca.gov.

Community Day at the Back Bay Science Center
Date:
Sun, 02/19/2017
Time:
10:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Where:
Newport Back Bay
Difficulty Rating:
1
Minimum Age:
n/a
Family Friendly:
Yes
More Information  

Kayak Tour

Water
Water

The Newport Bay Conservancy offers a 2-hour guided kayak tour of the Back Bay in the heart of Newport Beach every Sunday. This is one of the best ways to appreciate Upper Newport Bay by getting out on the water. Kayaking in the Newport Beach Back Bay is fun and easy. Tours leaves from the Newport Aquatic Center at 10:00 am. They are great for both novices and experiences paddlers alike.

Kayak Tour
Date:
Sun, 02/19/2017
Time:
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Where:
Upper Newport Bay Ecological Reserve
Difficulty Rating:
Variable
Minimum Age:
8
Family Friendly:
Yes
More Information  

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Afternoon Family Beginner Mountain Bike Ride: Limestone Canyon to The Sinks

Mountain Biking
Irvine Ranch Conservancy Public Use

For families and children ages 12 and up who would like to join IRC-certified volunteers on a longer slow-paced, family-oriented ride through sycamores, oaks, and habitat native to California. The route takes us to The Sinks, Orange County’s own “Grand Canyon.”Along the way, we will stop and talk about the local habitat, and hope to see some of our local native animals and raptors. The ride is 8 – 9 miles with 400 – 800 feet of elevation gain that may require hike-a‐bike for some riders.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-3 activity on the land.

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Afternoon Family Beginner Mountain Bike Ride: Limestone Canyon to The Sinks
Date:
Sun, 02/19/2017
Time:
3:00 PM - 5:30 PM
Where:
Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
Variable
Distance:
8 miles
Minimum Age:
12
Spaces Left:
Closed
More Information  

Monday, February 20, 2017

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Discover Hidden Canyons: Fremont Canyon

Interpretive
weir_oak sunlight

Discover the hidden canyons and trails found on the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks. These seldom hiked trails offer fantastic vista views, secluded oasis of oaks or rising rocky outcrops. Come take a stroll along the trails to discover the hidden gems of Orange County. We will listen to tales how the geology was formed underfoot to tales of the plants and animals that call these protected habitats home. Please wear comfortable clothes and shoes for our hike as well as proper sun protection and water.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-2 activity on the land.

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Discover Hidden Canyons: Fremont Canyon
Date:
Mon, 02/20/2017
Time:
8:30 AM - 11:00 AM
Where:
Fremont Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
3 miles
Minimum Age:
12
Spaces Left:
2 of 25
More Information  

Tai Chi in the Canyon

Hiking & Fitness
The Natural History of Baker Canyon

Tai Chi is an ancient Chinese exercise renowned for the benefits of its slow, non-stressful physical exercises as well as its meditative qualities. Baker Canyon offers a natural setting as a perfect location for deep breathing of the fresh air, energizing our internal energy (Qi) and using it to root ourselves to the land. The class will perform gentle warm up exercises directly associated with many of the moves and we will then learn and practice the Yang style.

The first hour will be dedicated to beginning students learning the first set and the second hour focuses on the advanced students to study the 2nd and 3rd sets.  All participants are welcome to either participate or observe both sessions as the gate will be closed for the 2 hour duration.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-1 activity on the land.
Tai Chi in the Canyon
Date:
Mon, 02/20/2017
Time:
9:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Where:
Black Star Canyon Wilderness Park
Difficulty Rating:
1
Minimum Age:
16
Spaces Left:
12 of 20
More Information  

CANCELLED: Tecate Cypress Stewardship

Stewardship
Tecate Cypress (3)

The Tecate Cypress is a rare species found only in southern California and northern Baja California. Unfortunately, the northern most population in the Santa Ana Mountains is in severe decline due to too-frequent wildfires. In effort to protect this rare species, locally genetic trees have been planted in Fremont Canyon, in close proximity to the staging area. Join us as we deeply water and weed around the young trees. Your work will ensure the newly-planted Tecate has all they need to thrive, and will directly help the effort to ensure the persistence of this unique forest community here in Orange County!

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-2 activity on the land.

CANCELLED: Tecate Cypress Stewardship
Date:
Mon, 02/20/2017
Time:
9:30 AM - 11:00 AM
Where:
Fremont Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
2
Minimum Age:
10
Spaces Left:
5 of 5
More Information  

After Work Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road

Hiking & Fitness
After Work Fitness HHR 20120822

Join us every Monday night for a fitness-focused hike on the paved Hicks Haul Road. During the winter, hikers will enjoy panoramic city lights view of Orange County. This hike travels about 3.5 miles, up to the top of Loma Ridge and back down.

The hike is conducted at about 3-3.5 miles per hour, but you may travel a bit faster or slower, at a walk, run, or jog depending on your comfort level.  Most participants finish the route in about 1 hour.  Because of the paved surface of the road, you may wear regular running or walking shoes.  Trail shoes are fine, but not required.  Please bring adequate water and red lens flashlight. It will be dark and can become very cool. Please dress warmly, but in layers as you will warm-up while hiking.

 

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-3 activity on the land.

After Work Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road
Date:
Mon, 02/20/2017
Time:
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
Where:
Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
3.5 miles
Minimum Age:
16
Spaces Left:
10 of 30
More Information  

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Tuesday Morning Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road

Hiking & Fitness
TMFH-HHR 20131125A

Ready for a workout? Forget the gym for the day and head outside! Join us for an exhilarating morning fitness walk on the paved Hicks Haul Road. This hike allows you to choose between a 3, 6, or 8 mile route, all of which are conducted at the speed of about 3.0 to 3.5 miles per hour.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-3/4 activity on the land.

The road is paved and the terrain is smooth, so this is a great walk for anyone who wants a “wilderness experience” without getting dirty!  We will have two fairly steep hill ascents and descents. Along the way, you will have sweeping views of much of Orange County and the Santa Ana Mountains. Various animals, like hawks, deer, and lizards are also frequently seen in this area.

Walkers should be confident in their ability to hike 3, 6, or 8 miles at a steady pace. Ages 16 and up. Low interpretation.

Tuesday Morning Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road
Date:
Tue, 02/21/2017
Time:
9:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Where:
Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
8 miles
Minimum Age:
16
Spaces Left:
19 of 30
More Information  

Dripping Springs Trail Restoration

Stewardship
011

Please join IRC staff as we convert Dripping Springs ranch road into a single track trail! Activities may include planting native plants along the trail side, weeding out non-native invasive species and watering newly planted plants.  Your effort will help to create a beautiful clear path for people as well as important habitat for wildlife. Spend the day working through grassland, coastal sage scrub, and woodland habitats and then hike to Dripping Springs, a natural water source dripping out of an earthquake fault and then down a gorgeous fern-covered rock face. This unique feature supports many rare plants and animals in the area. No previous experience is needed; however we will be hiking approximately 2.5 miles with heavy tools. Thank you for your continued support of the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks!

Please review the Difficulty Ratings before registering. Understanding the 1-through-5 ratings system will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-3 activity on the land.

Dripping Springs Trail Restoration
Date:
Tue, 02/21/2017
Time:
9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Where:
Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
3.5 miles
Minimum Age:
10
Family Friendly:
Yes
Spaces Left:
8 of 10
More Information  

Orchard Hills Evening Hike

Hiking & Fitness
Orchard Hills Evening Hike

Come out and enjoy the evening with us on the Orchard Hills loop trail. This trail meanders around an avocado orchard on the edge of the open space preserve and provides fantastic ridge-top views of Irvine and the Pacific coastline.

The three-mile loop has several very steep climbs, but the hike is done at a moderate pace. The effort is rewarded with a beautiful, unobstructed view to the west. Please bring water and wear sturdy shoes. This hike is not suitable for children under 12.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-3 activity on the land

Orchard Hills Evening Hike
Date:
Tue, 02/21/2017
Time:
6:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Where:
Orchard Hills
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
3 miles
Minimum Age:
12
Spaces Left:
15 of 25
More Information  

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Mid Week Hike: Orchard Hills

Hiking & Fitness
orchard hills

Recharge your batteries with a refreshing mid-week hike through Orchard Hills and Loma Ridge. We’ll hike around an avocado grove on the edge of the open space preserve and up to Loma Ridge, providing spectacular views of all of Orange County.

This hike involves multiple steep climbs and descents, including 2600+ feet of accumulated climbing elevation, but is done at a moderate pace of approximately 3 mph. Please bring plenty of water, and wear sturdy shoes. Hiking distance is 10-12 miles.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-4 activity on the land.

Mid Week Hike: Orchard Hills
Date:
Wed, 02/22/2017
Time:
8:00 AM - 1:00 PM
Where:
Orchard Hills
Difficulty Rating:
4
Distance:
10 miles
Minimum Age:
18
Spaces Left:
12 of 20
More Information  
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