Activities and Programs


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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.

Thursday, May 26, 2022

Fitness Hike

Hiking & Fitness
Fitness Hike

Please be aware this is a Moderate Fitness Hike and not for beginners; pace is approximately 21-minute mile (slightly less than 3 mph). Raise your heart rate and your spirits on this moderately paced, 7.2-mile hike over steep and uneven terrain (1050-foot elevation gain) with Laguna Canyon Foundation volunteers.

Registration Required. Register at lagunacanyon.org/events

Fitness Hike
Date:
Thu, 05/26/2022
Time:
8:30 AM - 11:00 AM
Where:
Laguna Coast Wilderness Park
Difficulty Rating:
3
Minimum Age:
18
More Information  

Restoration in Big Canyon

Stewardship
Stewardship

Around 25,000 plants have been installed at our Big Canyon restoration site, and we would love your help protecting the new plantings from invasive plants. Invasive plants pose a huge threat to displacing native plant communities and wildlife at the Bay, second only to habitat loss. By removing invasive weeds, we will ensure the Big Canyon project site thrives with native plants for years to come. No prior plant ID/weeding experience necessary.

Minors must have a legal guardian present at all times.

To register, go to: RestoreBigCanyon.eventbrite.com

Interested in bringing out a large group of 15 or more? Please contact Zachery Flores at zachery.flores@newportbay.org for more information on how to sign up.

Time & Location
We will meet at 9am at the project site entrance. A map with directions will be included in your confirmation email following registration. From the parking location, the project site is a short 5-minute walk into the canyon. NOTE: There are no restrooms at this location.

What to Bring/Wear
Be sure to bring sunscreen, a hat, and plenty of water. We also recommend wearing breathable clothing that you don’t mind getting dirty. Hand tools, shovels, and gloves will be provided. All volunteers not yet fully vaccinated must wear a face mask while on the project site. Face masks are optional for fully vaccinated volunteers.

Restoration in Big Canyon
Date:
Thu, 05/26/2022
Time:
9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Where:
Upper Newport Bay
Difficulty Rating:
2
Minimum Age:
14
More Information  

Evening Hike on Hicks Haul Road

Hiking & Fitness
Evening Hike on Hicks Haul Road

Enjoy an evening hike through stunning rock formations and fragrant native plants as you listen to the sounds of nature. This hike is done at an easy walking pace. This out-and-back program travels 3.5 miles round trip to scenic Loma Ridge and back down. Please bring a red-tinted flashlight as the return portion of the hike may be after sunset.

Evening Hike on Hicks Haul Road
Date:
Thu, 05/26/2022
Time:
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
Where:
Irvine Open Space Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
2
Distance:
3.5 miles
Minimum Age:
12
Spaces Left:
17 of 20
More Information  

Friday, May 27, 2022

Distance Hike: Limestone Canyon

Hiking & Fitness
Distance Hike: Limestone Canyon

Join us for a scenic, fast-paced, challenging, distance hike in the beautiful Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve. This hike is for physically fit hikers who enjoy the challenge of multiple steep climbs and descents. This 10–13 mile hike offers sweeping views of Orange County and the Santa Ana Mountains as well as possible wildlife sightings. This hike may include a visit to The Sinks and/or Dripping Springs.

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

Distance Hike: Limestone Canyon
Date:
Fri, 05/27/2022
Time:
6:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Where:
Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
4
Distance:
13 miles
Minimum Age:
18
Spaces Left:
Registration for this event opens at 8:00am on 05/19/2022
More Information  

Fourth Friday Habitat Restoration in Buck Gully

Stewardship
Fourth Friday Habitat Restoration in Buck Gully

Birds and other wildlife need healthy habitat to thrive. Simple things like planting native plants can greatly improve habitat for wildlife. You can be part of that positive impact while enjoying the beauty of Buck Gully near Newport Beach. Come help us with a variety of activities ranging from seed collection to weeding invasive plants.

This activity takes place on sloped terrain and sturdy hiking boots are highly recommended. All training, tools, and gloves will be provided to ensure your safety and comfort. Rattlesnakes are occasionally seen here and generally avoid people, but protective gear will be provided.

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

Fourth Friday Habitat Restoration in Buck Gully
Date:
Fri, 05/27/2022
Time:
9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Where:
Buck Gully Reserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
5 miles
Minimum Age:
18
Spaces Left:
Registration for this event opens at 8:00am on 05/19/2022
More Information  

Wild Tales

Interpretive
Interpretive

Wild tales story time is offered every Friday and includes an outdoor story time in our newly renovated amphitheater, an age appropriate hike, and a craft project. Each session will have a new story, hike theme, and craft project.

Activities are designed for ages 2-4 but all are welcome.

All Minors under 16 must be accompanied by a parent of guardian at all times.

Walk-in’s welcome, but space is limited so registration is suggested. If the session fills up, priority will be given to those who signed up in advance.

Rain or heat advisory will cancel the event.

Wild Tales
Date:
Fri, 05/27/2022
Time:
10:00 AM - 10:45 AM
Where:
Upper Newport Bay
Difficulty Rating:
1
Minimum Age:
All Ages
Family Friendly:
Yes
Spaces Left:
Full
More Information  

Saturday, May 28, 2022

Bommer Canyon East Fork and Ridge Route Loop Hike

Hiking & Fitness
Bommer Canyon East Fork and Ridge Route Loop Hike

Experience the serenity of Bommer Canyon during this moderate-paced hike in the Irvine Open Space. We’ll experience mature coastal sage scrub and fantastic views overlooking the city of Irvine and the hillsides to the north. This hike is just over 3 miles and includes 700 feet of total climbing elevation with several very steep inclines. The steepest section ascends 300 feet in a quarter-mile. Participants must be in good physical condition.

Bommer Canyon East Fork and Ridge Route Loop Hike
Date:
Sat, 05/28/2022
Time:
8:00 AM - 10:30 AM
Where:
Bommer Canyon
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
3 miles
Minimum Age:
12
Spaces Left:
Registration for this event opens at 8:00am on 05/20/2022
More Information  

Explore Weir Canyon: Animal Signs and Tracks

Interpretive
Explore Weir Canyon: Animal Signs and Tracks

Come join us as we hike 5 miles through the lovely Weir Canyon. Before our hike starts a brief introduction to animal tracks and scats will be given. Along our journey, we will be looking for any signs animals might have left behind for us to find. Tracks, scats, and other signs are out there waiting for us to find them!

Please come prepared with plenty (50 oz) of water, closed-toe shoes, and a sturdy hiking backpack.

Explore Weir Canyon: Animal Signs and Tracks
Date:
Sat, 05/28/2022
Time:
8:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Where:
Weir Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
5 miles
Minimum Age:
12
Spaces Left:
Registration for this event opens at 8:00am on 05/20/2022
More Information  

Family Hike: Mesa

Interpretive
Family Hike: Mesa

Enjoy nature with friends and family on the Mesa. We start our program by climbing a small hill at an easy pace to reach the top. Once up on the mesa, we will hike along a fairly flat trail as we watch for red-tailed hawks and mule deer.  The hike averages 2-3 miles round trip at an easy pace with a medium level of interpretation. This program is for participants who would like a slower-paced hike.

Wear comfortable clothes and sturdy shoes, and bring water for the hike. Be ready to enjoy the sounds and smells of the early evening.

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

Family Hike: Mesa
Date:
Sat, 05/28/2022
Time:
8:00 AM - 10:00 AM
Where:
Black Star Canyon Wilderness Park
Difficulty Rating:
2
Distance:
2.5 miles
Minimum Age:
6
Family Friendly:
Yes
Spaces Left:
Registration for this event opens at 8:00am on 05/20/2022
More Information  

Waterworks Nature Hike: Fremont Canyon

Interpretive
Waterworks Nature Hike: Fremont Canyon

Join an OC Parks staff-led interpretive nature hike along the “Waterworks Trail” in the Irvine Ranch Open Space.  We’ll depart from Irvine Regional Park “Lot P” and head towards the beautiful Fremont Canyon Nature Preserve, part of the Landmarks on the backside of the Irvine Lake dam before crossing Santiago Creek and heading back on the other bank of the creek. Beautiful views are plentiful on this route.

Route and mileage may change dependent on trail conditions.

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

Waterworks Nature Hike: Fremont Canyon
Date:
Sat, 05/28/2022
Time:
8:00 AM - 10:30 AM
Where:
Fremont Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
3.5 miles
Minimum Age:
12
Spaces Left:
Registration for this event opens at 8:00am on 05/20/2022
More Information  

Sunday, May 29, 2022

CANCELLED: Safe Trails Awareness Day – Santiago Oaks (BCP Volunteers)

Stewardship
Stewardship

Back Country Patrol (BCP) Volunteers share their trail knowledge with park visitors while working the monthly Safe Trail Awareness Day informative booth at Irvine, Santiago Oaks, and Peters Canyon Regional Parks. BCP Volunteers share how trail users can maximize their enjoyment while in the parks. The Trail Etiquette Triangle is highlighted at the booth and is a friendly reminder when each hiker, biker and equestrian have the right-away while passing each other on the trails. BCP Volunteers answer questions, encourage proper trail etiquette, and hand out bike bells and other trail goodies.

Booth is open 8 – 11 a.m., weather permitted. Meet at the Ranger Station by 7:30 a.m.

Booth is available for Facility Certified Back Country Patrol Volunteers for Irvine, Santiago Oaks, and Peters Canyon Regional Parks.

Contact Resource Specialist Kelley Brugmann for more questions at Kelley.Brugmann@ocparks.com or (714) 973-6625

CANCELLED: Safe Trails Awareness Day - Santiago Oaks (BCP Volunteers)
Date:
Sun, 05/29/2022
Time:
7:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Where:
Santiago Oaks Regional Park
Difficulty Rating:
1
Minimum Age:
12
More Information  

CANCELLED: Intermediate Hike: Black Star County Road and Silmod

Interpretive
CANCELLED: Intermediate Hike: Black Star County Road and Silmod

Welcome back to the wonderful outdoors!

Get out there with OC Parks Resource Specialist Gray and other budding hikers on an intermediate hike at Black Star Canyon Road. This hike begins on Black Star Canyon County Trail before heading up into the surrounding hills including Silmod trail into Baker Canyon, where we’ll take in incredible views of Irvine Lake and the surrounding canyons. Total hike is approximately 3 miles. At hike completion, Gray will share his local knowledge of nearby intermediate-level trails to consider exploring on your next adventure. Please come prepared with sunscreen, plenty of water and closed-toe shoes.

CANCELLED: Intermediate Hike: Black Star County Road and Silmod
Date:
Sun, 05/29/2022
Time:
8:00 AM - 10:00 AM
Where:
Black Star Canyon Wilderness Park
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
3 miles
Minimum Age:
12
Spaces Left:
Registration for this event opens at 8:00am on 05/21/2022
More Information  

Fossils are Fun

Interpretive
Fossils are Fun

Come out and enjoy this family-fun activity on the Mesa. We will start with an activity to make your own fossil, then we will take a 2-3 mile hike looking for fossils deposited here in Orange County millions of years ago when Orange County was a sea. A slight elevation gain (200 feet) to start the hike will give incredible views of the surrounding peaks and the red rock cliffs of Black Star Canyon. Wear comfortable shoes, bring water and enjoy an early morning hike in this intriguing region.

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

Fossils are Fun
Date:
Sun, 05/29/2022
Time:
9:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Where:
Black Star Canyon Wilderness Park
Difficulty Rating:
2
Distance:
2.5 miles
Minimum Age:
8
Spaces Left:
Registration for this event opens at 8:00am on 05/21/2022
More Information  
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