Rolling hills in the distance meet the Pacific Ocean.
Legacy Club Field Trips Explore nature with The Legacy Club in California. © Bill Marr/TNC

The Legacy Club

California & Nevada Legacy Club Field Trips

Our Legacy Club field trips provide a behind-the-scenes look at our work, access to TNC staff and a chance to meet fellow Legacy Club members.

All 2023 field trips are open for registration.

REGISTER NOW

 

Thank you for your commitment to the future our natural world. We hope you join us to experience some of the beautiful places you’re helping to protect.

The health and safety of our members and staff remain our top priority. See the Legacy Club Field Trip Health & Safety page for current information on COVID-19 safety protocols and requirements for participants.

Trips are limited to 1 trip per Legacy Club member plus a guest. The 2023 Field Trips are expected to fill up very quickly.

Questions? Contact your Legacy Club Stewardship Manager Allison Murdock Haslam at caLegacy@tnc.org or (415) 281-0425

Frequently Asked Questions

Cosumnes River Preserve (Sacramento County, CA)

Two options: Wednesday, January 25 or Thursday, November 16

A major stop on the Pacific Flyway, this 50,000-acre preserve hosts over 250 species of resident and migratory birds, including lesser and greater sandhill cranes. As the last free-flowing river on the Sierra’s western slope, the Cosumnes provides beneficial flooding that makes it a wellspring of conservation opportunities. See TNC’s agricultural water management and habitat restoration strategies in action. This trip culminates with a viewing of the sandhill cranes at sunset.

HIKE: EASY, 1 MILE; WHEELCHAIR ACCESSIBLE
ESTIMATED TIME OF TRIP: 12:30-6pm (January), 12-5:30pm (November)
ESTIMATED MEETING POINT: Cosumnes River Preserve in Galt, CA (30 minutes south of Sacramento)
 

Lucky 5 Ranch (San Diego County, CA)

Thursday, March 16

Nestled in the Laguna Mountains, Lucky 5 Ranch is a vital link that connects Cuyamaca Rancho and Anza-Borrego Desert state parks. The property supports abundant wildlife, including golden eagles, mountain lions and bobcats, and features grasslands, rock outcrops, montane meadows and chaparral. Guests will learn about our efforts to protect this critical wildlife corridor and similar lands across the state.

HIKE: MODERATELY STRENUOUS, 3 MILES
ESTIMATED TIME OF TRIP: 10am – 1:30pm
ESTIMATED MEETING POINT: 15 minutes outside of Julian, CA
Sandhill cranes in the Cosumnes River Preserve wetlands at sunset.
CONSUMNES RIVER PRESERVE The Cosumnes River Preserve wetlands hosts migrating sandhill cranes. © Alan W. Eckert, Alan Eckert Photography
Field trip goers hike through golden grasses on Lucky 5 Ranch.
LUCKY 5 RANCH Field trip goers hike through golden grasses on Lucky 5 Ranch. © Simon Williams/TNC
CONSUMNES RIVER PRESERVE The Cosumnes River Preserve wetlands hosts migrating sandhill cranes. © Alan W. Eckert, Alan Eckert Photography
LUCKY 5 RANCH Field trip goers hike through golden grasses on Lucky 5 Ranch. © Simon Williams/TNC

Las Piletas Ranch (San Luis Obispo County, CA)

Two options: Wednesday, March 29 or Thursday, March 30

Purchased by TNC in 2022, Las Piletas Ranch boasts 13,500 acres of rolling foothills, grasslands, and oak woodlands, and 24 miles of springs and seasonal creeks. Learn how TNC is working to create the San Andreas Linkage along the inner Coast Ranges to protect a vulnerable wildlife corridor for species native to this region such as the endangered San Joaquin kit fox.

HIKE: MODERATE, 3-4 MILES
ESTIMATED TIME OF TRIP: 10am-3pm
ESTIMATED MEETING POINT: 90 minutes east of San Luis Obispo, CA
 

7J Ranch (Nye County, NV)

Wednesday, April 12

This 900-acre ranch is dotted with springs and naturally irrigated meadows that harbor native fish, amphibians and spring snails found nowhere else in the world. Its unique geography—between the Great Basin and Mojave deserts—is a linkage that sustains a vast web of species. Join us near Beatty, Nevada, two hours northwest of Las Vegas, to learn how TNC is conserving this important landscape at the headwaters of the Amargosa River.

HIKE: EASY, 1-2 MILES
ESTIMATED TIME OF TRIP: 10am-3pm
ESTIMATED MEETING POINT: Beatty, NV (2 hours northwest of Las Vegas)
San Joaquin kit fox mom and babies
LAS PILETAS RANCH The endangered San Joaquin kit fox is native to the inner Coast Ranges region where the Las Piletas Ranch is located. © Ethan Inlander/TNC
A willow flycatcher perches on a branch.
7J RANCH Situated at the headwaters of the Amargosa River, the 7J Ranch has exceptional ecological value including more than 250 species of resident and migratory birds. © Simon Williams/TNC
LAS PILETAS RANCH The endangered San Joaquin kit fox is native to the inner Coast Ranges region where the Las Piletas Ranch is located. © Ethan Inlander/TNC
7J RANCH Situated at the headwaters of the Amargosa River, the 7J Ranch has exceptional ecological value including more than 250 species of resident and migratory birds. © Simon Williams/TNC

Frank and Joan Randall Tehachapi Preserve, Loop Ranch (Kern County, CA)

Saturday, April 29

Spanning 81,000 acres, TNC’s largest preserve in California sits at the southern end of the Sierra Nevada and forms a linkage that connects four of the state’s most important ecological regions: the Sierra Nevada, the Mojave Desert, the Central Valley and the South Coast. The preserve provides essential habitat for such notable species as the California condor and mountain lion. See the famous Tehachapi railroad loop and hike through blue oaks while learning about this critical wildlife corridor and why we’re working to safeguard it for future generations.

Hike: Moderate 2-3 miles
ESTIMATED TIME OF TRIP: 10am-3pm
ESTIMATED MEETING POINT: 15 minutes outside Tehachapi, CA
 

River Fork Ranch Preserve (Douglas County, NV)

Thursday, May 11

This 800-acre TNC preserve protects wetland, meadow and riparian habitats along a two-mile section of the Carson River and supports a robust and diverse wildlife population that includes bald eagles, sandhill cranes, leopard frogs, monarch butterflies and mule deer. Learn how TNC is protecting the floodplain, restoring habitat and running an active cattle operation sustainably.

Hike: Easy, 2-3 miles
ESTIMATED TIME OF TRIP: 10am-3pm
ESTIMATED MEETING POINT: 50 minutes south of Reno, NV or 40 minutes east of South Lake Tahoe, CA
Railroad loop
TEHACHAPI LOOP This unique railroad loop passes through one of the 11 land parcels that make up TNC’s new Frank and Joan Randall Preserve in the Tehachapi Mountains. © Tyler Schiffman
RIVER FORK RANCH PRESERVE
RIVER FORK RANCH PRESERVE TNC secured long-term protection of key wetland, meadow and riparian habitats along a tow-mile section of the Carson River by purchasing the River Fork Ranch in Nevada. © Simon Williams/TNC
TEHACHAPI LOOP This unique railroad loop passes through one of the 11 land parcels that make up TNC’s new Frank and Joan Randall Preserve in the Tehachapi Mountains. © Tyler Schiffman
RIVER FORK RANCH PRESERVE TNC secured long-term protection of key wetland, meadow and riparian habitats along a tow-mile section of the Carson River by purchasing the River Fork Ranch in Nevada. © Simon Williams/TNC

Jack and Laura Dangermond Preserve (Santa Barbara County, CA)

Two options: Friday, July 14 or Friday, August 25

Visit an active cattle ranch and more than 24,300-acre preserve located at Point Conception—a critical ecological transition zone between Northern and Southern California. On your tour, you’ll learn how this magnificent property connects a network of protected areas covering 125,000 acres of important, climate-resilient habitat. Join us to hear about our plans for its future.

Hike: Easy, 2 miles
ESTIMATED TIME OF TRIP: 9am-12pm or 1pm-4pm
ESTIMATED MEETING POINT: 1 hour west of Santa Barbara
 

Ten Mile River (Mendocino County, CA)

Friday, September 22

Located along a scenic stretch of coastline north of Fort Bragg, the Ten Mile River and estuary is critical to recovering California’s imperiled salmon populations. The river runs through working forests recovering from a century of clear-cutting into one of the North Coast’s least developed estuaries. Our coastal river and estuary protection project here demonstrates how sustainable forestry, ranching and salmon conservation can work together.

Hike: Moderate, 2-3 miles
ESTIMATED TIME OF TRIP: 10am-3pm
ESTIMATED MEETING POINT: 15 minutes north of Fort Bragg, CA
Cattle ranch view
CATTLE RANCH A family-owned cattle ranch for over a century, the lands of the Dangermond Preserve have retained near-wilderness conditions. © Bill Marr/TNC
CALIFORNIA COAST
CALIFORNIA COAST The beaches, tidepools, and nearshore environments of the Dangermond Preserve are extraordinarily biodiverse. © Simon Williams/TNC
CATTLE RANCH A family-owned cattle ranch for over a century, the lands of the Dangermond Preserve have retained near-wilderness conditions. © Bill Marr/TNC
CALIFORNIA COAST The beaches, tidepools, and nearshore environments of the Dangermond Preserve are extraordinarily biodiverse. © Simon Williams/TNC

Los Angeles River (Los Angeles County, CA)

Thursday, October 12

Los Angeles is one of the most populous cities in the world and while many of its waterways have been paved and channelized, nature still manages to flourish in these conditions! The L.A. River and its tributaries harbor a surprising variety of native plants and animals in isolated pockets. See how TNC’s urban restoration work benefits both nature and human communities.

Hike: Easy, 1-2 miles, wheelchair accessible
ESTIMATED TIME OF TRIP: 10:30am – 2pm
ESTIMATED MEETING POINT: Los Angeles, CA
Salmon in water
SALMON HABITAT TNC’s coastal and river protection project here demonstrates how sustainable forestry, ranching and salmon conservation can work together. © Bridget Besaw
A CLOSE-UP image of rushing water and bubbles in the foreground with rocks and vegetation in the background
L.A. RIVER HABITAT As TNC advances our Urban Conservation Program we aim to use the L.A. River to prove that nature and infrastructure don’t have to be at odds—they can reinforce one another. © Ian Shive/USFWS
SALMON HABITAT TNC’s coastal and river protection project here demonstrates how sustainable forestry, ranching and salmon conservation can work together. © Bridget Besaw
L.A. RIVER HABITAT As TNC advances our Urban Conservation Program we aim to use the L.A. River to prove that nature and infrastructure don’t have to be at odds—they can reinforce one another. © Ian Shive/USFWS

Calling all naturalists and photographers!

If you have an interest in volunteering as a naturalist or photographer on a field trip, please include that in your registration form. Volunteer photographers will use their skills to document a field trip while the volunteer naturalists will be an additional resource by providing information on flora and fauna to those around them.

Dawit Zeleke
Dawit Zeleke Dawit Zeleke photographed in his satsuma orchard in Orland, California. © Drew Kelly

Remembering Dawit Zeleke

In 2022, TNC lost a conservation hero. Over the arc of his extraordinary career, Dawit led conservation partnerships across California and was integral to the protection of the wetlands of the Cosumnes River, establishing new forests along the Sacramento River and the 20-year Hamilton City Project. Dawit led the effort to make TNC’s Staten Island a model for sustainable, wildlife friendly agriculture and reduced emissions farming. Additionally, he curated the Sierra Valley Preserve to be a haven for both people and wildlife. Dawit was with The Nature Conservancy for 30 years and he joined many a Legacy Club field trip in California to share his passion with TNC supporters.

2023 California Legacy Club Field Trips

Explore nature with The Legacy Club