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.

Monday, February 6, 2023

After Work Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road

Hiking & Fitness
After Work Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road

Join us every Monday night in OCParks’ Irvine Ranch Open Space for a fitness-focused hike on the paved Hicks Haul Road. During the spring, summer and fall, hikers will enjoy wonderful sunset views and a panoramic overview 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!

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-3 activity on the land. Please visit our FAQ page for answers to activity specific questions you may have prior to registering.

After Work Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road
Date:
Mon, 02/06/2023
Time:
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
Where:
Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
3.5 miles
Minimum Age:
16
Spaces Left:
Registration has closed.
More Information  

Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Early Morning Advanced Hike: Whiting Wilderness Park

Hiking & Fitness
Early Morning Advanced Hike: Whiting Wilderness Park

Join us on this early morning advanced hike in OCParks’ Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park. This hike involves steep climbs and descents on a variety of trails, both double and singletrack, and is done at an average moving pace of 3 – 3.5 mph. Though challenging, we are rewarded with canopied woodlands, sweeping views, and possible wildlife sightings. Please come prepared with a daypack, 70 oz. (2 quarts) of water, trail snacks, closed-toe hiking shoes, sunscreen, first aid, and any other supplies needed to keep you safe on the trail. Each participant must carry his or her own pack and water. Under-prepared participants may be denied access to this program.

Early Morning Advanced Hike: Whiting Wilderness Park
Date:
Tue, 02/07/2023
Time:
7:15 AM - 10:45 AM
Where:
Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park
Difficulty Rating:
4
Distance:
8 miles
Minimum Age:
18
Spaces Left:
4 of 10
More Information  

Tuesday Morning Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road

Hiking & Fitness
Tuesday Morning Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road

Ready for a workout? Forget the gym for the day and head outside! Join us for an exhilarating morning fitness hike on the paved Hicks Haul Road in OCParks’ Irvine Ranch Open Space. 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. The footing on the asphalt paved road is smoother than dirt roads and single-track trails normally found in Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve, but is beginning to show its age with cracks, crevices and an occasional dip. Otherwise, the terrain is smooth, so this is a great walk for anyone who wants a “wilderness experience” without getting dirty! The 6- and 8-mile routes experience two fairly steep ascents and descents. The 3-mile route takes you to the top of Loma Ridge and back down. 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.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-3/4 activity on the land. Please visit our FAQ page for answers to activity specific questions you may have prior to registering. 

Tuesday Morning Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road
Date:
Tue, 02/07/2023
Time:
7:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Where:
Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
8 miles
Minimum Age:
16
Spaces Left:
5 of 25
More Information  

Bridges of Buck Gully Hike

Hiking & Fitness
Bridges of Buck Gully Hike

Be inspired by both the natural beauty and recent history of Newport Beach’s Buck Gully Reserve, as we explore this protected area and the collaboration that made it possible. Buck Gully is a natural coastal canyon that opened to the public in 2012 with the installation of four bridges to provide safe public access. The bridges allow exploration of the entire Buck Gully Reserve, and also provide unique vantages and viewing platforms from which to pause and observe the abundant life in and around the stream that runs through the gully year-round. Our guided program starts with a short walk from the Oasis Senior Center to the beginning of the Buck Gully trail, with a visually dramatic entrance into this special canyon. We’ll cross two bridges on the first section of our walk, and then enter the canopied singletrack portion of the trail as we pass by the third bridge. At the fourth and last bridge, we will pause to enjoy the shaded beauty of this hidden refuge, and then retrace our route back to the Oasis.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-3 activity on the land. Please visit our FAQ page for answers to activity specific questions you may have prior to registering.

Bridges of Buck Gully Hike
Date:
Tue, 02/07/2023
Time:
8:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Where:
Buck Gully Reserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
5 miles
Minimum Age:
16
Spaces Left:
14 of 20
More Information  

CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Nurturing Oaks in Weir Canyon

Stewardship
CANCELLED due to Trail Conditions: Nurturing Oaks in Weir Canyon

Spend the morning in a beautiful oak woodland watering Coast Live Oak seedlings in Weir Canyon. To get to the planting site we will travel for 15 minutes in a safari style truck giving you majestic views of Weir Canyon. We will be planting using shovels and small handheld tools. No experience necessary.

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: Nurturing Oaks in Weir Canyon
Date:
Tue, 02/07/2023
Time:
9:00 AM - 1:00 PM
Where:
Weir Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
5 miles
Minimum Age:
14
Spaces Left:
9 of 10
More Information  

Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Distance Hike: Bommer and Beyond

Hiking & Fitness
Distance Hike: Bommer and Beyond

Grab your day pack and join us on a distance hike through scenic Bommer Canyon and beyond into Laguna Coast and Crystal Cove Parks. We stage at Cattle Camp, historically a center for cattle operations that occurred in the San Joaquin Hills up until the late 1990s, and now part of the Irvine Open Space Preserve. This hike involves multiple steep climbs and descents across a variety of trail types, including some narrow singletracks, with 2200+ feet of accumulated climbing elevation, but is done at a moderate pace, approximately 3 mph. Please bring plenty of water (100 oz. recommended), and wear sturdy hiking shoes. Hiking distance is 10-12 miles.

All participants must carry their own day pack and water! Please come prepared with a pack, sturdy closed-toe hiking shoes or boots, sunscreen, first aid, and all other supplies to keep you safe and healthy on the trail for the half-day of being out in the wilderness area. Under-prepared participants may be denied access to the event! Program may be cancelled or shortened due to adverse weather conditions.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-4 activity on the land. Please visit our FAQ page for answers to activity specific questions you may have prior to registering.

Distance Hike: Bommer and Beyond
Date:
Wed, 02/08/2023
Time:
7:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Where:
Bommer Canyon
Difficulty Rating:
4
Distance:
12 miles
Minimum Age:
18
Spaces Left:
7 of 15
More Information  

After Work Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road

Hiking & Fitness
After Work Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road

Join us every Wednesday night in OCParks’ Irvine Ranch Open Space for a fitness-focused hike on the paved Hicks Haul Road. During the spring, summer and fall, hikers will enjoy wonderful sunset views and a panoramic overview 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 an average of 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!

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-3 activity on the land. Please visit our FAQ page for answers to activity specific questions you may have prior to registering.

After Work Fitness Hike on Paved Hicks Haul Road
Date:
Wed, 02/08/2023
Time:
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
Where:
Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
3
Distance:
3.5 miles
Minimum Age:
16
Spaces Left:
8 of 20
More Information  

Thursday, February 9, 2023

Thursday Morning Trek: Agua Chinon and The Sinks

Hiking & Fitness
Thursday Morning Trek: Agua Chinon and The Sinks

Come out and join us on a breathtaking hike from the Irvine Open Space Preserve into OC Parks’ Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve. This week’s docent-led hike begins in the Agua Chinon wash, continues to The Sinks, and may include a side trip to Box Springs, a natural year-round source of fresh water.

Maximum distance is just short of 7 miles, with some sustained climbing in one section. Participants must wear sturdy, closed-toe hiking shoes. Remember to pack plenty of water, sunscreen, a hat, and all other necessary equipment to keep you safe on the trail. This activity originates in the City of Irvine and travels into OC Parks’ Irvine Ranch Open Space.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-4 activity on the land. Please visit our FAQ page for answers to activity specific questions you may have prior to registering.

Thursday Morning Trek: Agua Chinon and The Sinks
Date:
Thu, 02/09/2023
Time:
8:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Where:
Irvine Open Space Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
4
Distance:
7 miles
Minimum Age:
16
Spaces Left:
Full
More Information  

Equestrian Trail Ride: Horseshoe Loop to Fremont

Equestrian
Equestrian Trail Ride: Horseshoe Loop to Fremont

Come bring your horse and join us on the sage-scented trail up and down gentle hills. We will start from Irvine Park and proceed on the Irvine Regional Park Horseshoe Loop to Waterworks trail that will take us under the towering overpass of the 241 Toll Road. We will see the foot of the Irvine Lake Dam and catch a glimpse of the heart of Fremont Canyon. We will pass the site of an enormous coal pile left by miners of yesteryear and then return to the park.

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

Please visit our FAQ page for answers to activity specific questions you may have prior to registering.

Equestrian Trail Ride: Horseshoe Loop to Fremont
Date:
Thu, 02/09/2023
Time:
10:00 AM - 1:30 PM
Where:
Fremont Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
4
Distance:
3.5 miles
Minimum Age:
18
Spaces Left:
7 of 10
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 in the Irvine Open Space Preserve 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.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-2 activity on the land. Please visit our FAQ page for answers to activity specific questions you may have prior to registering.

Evening Hike on Hicks Haul Road
Date:
Thu, 02/09/2023
Time:
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
Where:
Irvine Open Space Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
2
Distance:
3.5 miles
Minimum Age:
12
Spaces Left:
Full
More Information  

Friday, February 10, 2023

Distance Hike: Fremont to Weir Canyon

Hiking & Fitness
Distance Hike: Fremont to Weir Canyon

Join us for an early morning distance hike from remote Fremont Canyon to the oak woodlands of Weir Canyon. Shortly after leaving Irvine Regional Park, this hike climbs steeply from the mouth of Fremont Canyon and passes an abandoned coal mine. We continue through Upper Blind Canyon, up to a scenic overlook and then drop down to Weir Canyon as we wind our way back to Irvine Regional Park.

Distance is up to 14 miles and is designed for advanced hikers. Participants must be physically fit and have distance hiking experience.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level-5 activity on the land. Please visit our FAQ page for answers to activity specific questions you may have prior to registering.

Distance Hike: Fremont to Weir Canyon
Date:
Fri, 02/10/2023
Time:
7:00 AM - 1:00 PM
Where:
Fremont Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
5
Distance:
14 miles
Minimum Age:
18
Spaces Left:
11 of 15
More Information  

Bommer Canyon Exploration Day

Special Events
Bommer Canyon Exploration Day

Enjoy self-guided access in the southern portion of Irvine’s Open Space Preserve. The entire southern Open Space Preserve trail network will be open for self-guided hiking and biking from 8 am to 1 pm. This includes the single-tracks in Shady Canyon and Bommer Canyon that are reserved for guided activities only. Registration is required for this event. The Bommer Canyon Cattle Camp will be available for parking, but please take note that your vehicle must be removed from the Cattle Camp area by 1 pm.

Special Notice: Parking at the Bommer Canyon Cattle Camp is extremely limited due to ongoing construction, and will be available on a first come-first serve basis. Additional parking may be available at the Bommer Canyon Trailhead and Turtle Rock Community Park. Alternate parking options also include the Quail Hill Trailhead, Quail Hill Community Center and Laguna Coast Wilderness Park.

Bommer Canyon Exploration Day
Date:
Fri, 02/10/2023
Time:
8:00 AM - 1:00 PM
Where:
Bommer Canyon
Difficulty Rating:
Variable
Distance:
Variable
Minimum Age:
All Ages
Family Friendly:
Yes
Spaces Left:
63 of 100
More Information  

Growing Together at the Native Seed Farm

Stewardship
Growing Together at the Native Seed Farm

Looking for a way to give back to Nature this Winter? Come help us behind the scenes at the Irvine Ranch Conservancy’s one-of-a-kind Native Seed Farm in Irvine! Every day at the farm is different; depending on the needs of the farm we will be harvesting seeds from beautiful native plants, planting new seeds in the annual plots, working in our native plant demo garden, or tending to younger seedlings in our nursery.

Working with us at the Native Seed Farm is a great way to grow your community and cultivate knowledge about local plant and wildlife! Absolutely no experience or special equipment required! 

Reviewing the 1-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this Level 2 activity. Activities may include bending, stooping, crouching, squatting, long periods of standing, reaching, pulling, grabbing, and pushing.

Please note our Minors Policy for all public activities: All minors (under 18 years of age) must be accompanied by their respective parent or legal guardian. Both parent and their accompanying minor(s) must be registered for the Irvine Ranch Conservancy led activity they wish to attend.

Growing Together at the Native Seed Farm
Date:
Fri, 02/10/2023
Time:
9:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Where:
Native Seed Farm OCP
Difficulty Rating:
2
Minimum Age:
8
Spaces Left:
6 of 15
More Information  

Wild Tales

Interpretive
Wild Tales

Wild Tales is back!

Wild Tales will be offered every Friday. Each session will include a kid friendly hike, story time and craft project.

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

All minors under 16 must be accompanied by a guardian at all times.

Being that our easy hikes are on dirt trails, wearing clothes and shoes fit for such trail conditions are recommended.

Rain or heat advisory will cancel the event.

Wild Tales
Date:
Fri, 02/10/2023
Time:
10:00 AM - 10:45 AM
Where:
Upper Newport Bay
Difficulty Rating:
1
Minimum Age:
All Ages
Family Friendly:
Yes
Spaces Left:
16 of 30
More Information  

Saturday, February 11, 2023

Limestone Canyon Cardio Hike: East Sinks

Hiking & Fitness
Limestone Canyon Cardio Hike: East Sinks

Limestone Canyon is a treasure waiting to be discovered. Join us for a moderately-paced, 10-mile cardio hike. The hike may include a few short rest stops along the way and will be a great introduction to fitness, cardio-style hikes as well as OCParks’ magnificent Irvine Ranch Open Space.  Views of Limestone Canyon, and the surrounding wilderness, from Limestone Ridge along with a visit to the East Sinks will be the highlight of our tour.

Please bring a minimum of 70 oz. water. Come prepared with a pack, sturdy closed-toed hiking shoes or boots, sunscreen, first aid, and all other supplies to keep you safe and healthy on the trail for this cardio-paced (3-3.5 mph with very few stops) hike in a wilderness area. Each participant must carry his or her own pack and water.  Under-prepared participants may be denied access to this program.

Reviewing the 1-through-5 Difficulty Ratings will help you evaluate your readiness to participate in this level 4 activity on the land. Please visit our FAQ page for answers to activity specific questions you may have prior to registering.

Limestone Canyon Cardio Hike: East Sinks
Date:
Sat, 02/11/2023
Time:
7:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Where:
Limestone Canyon Nature Preserve
Difficulty Rating:
4
Distance:
10 miles
Minimum Age:
18
Spaces Left:
Full
More Information  
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