Prized for its beauty, unusual geology and extraordinary diversity
In the heart of urban Orange County, within minutes of millions of residents, lies a magnificent 50,000-acre network of permanently preserved open space and parks. Stretching from the mountains to the sea, these lands on The Irvine Ranch are remarkable not only for their biological importance -- they contain a wide range of habitats that support many species of birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles -- but also for the breadth of year-round recreational activities they offer residents.
Rich in both Irvine Ranch lore and nature's wonders, Bommer Canyon beckons walkers, hikers and all other outdoor enthusiasts to stroll past ancient oak and sycamore groves and rough rock outcrops. Much like the City’s Quail Hill Loop Trail specific trails in this area will be open daily for self-guided hikes from dawn to dusk; however, other areas and programs within Bommer do require pre-registration. Monthly Wilderness Access Days are also available to allow hikers, bikers and equestrians to explore the network of outstanding trails and views of the area.
4621 Santiago Canyon Rd.
Silverado, CA 92676-9757
Phone (714) 649-9111
Nestled at the base of the Cleveland National Forest, the 700-acre man-made lake has offered a wide variety of outdoor activities for decades. Many Orange County residents grew up fishing and camping at Irvine Lake. Among the activities are seasonal fishing for trout, bluegill, bass and catfish, pleasure boating, youth overnight camps, and birthday parties, reunions and other gatherings.
Irvine Regional Park
1 Irvine Park Rd.
Orange, CA 92862
Phone (714) 973-6835
Established in 1897, the land was the first of many donations by the James Irvine family to the public. Irvine Regional is Orange County’s oldest park, a historic landmark, and the very first regional park in the State of California. Some of Orange County’s oldest coast live oak and California sycamore trees can be found at the park, which offers 477 acres of shady picnic grounds, hiking and equestrian trails, stables, softball fields, volleyball courts, a lagoon with paddleboats, the Orange County Zoo, and even a steam-driven train.
Quail Hill Preserve
34 Shady Canyon Drive
Irvine, CA 92603
Phone (949) 743-5943
The 2.8-acre Quail Hill Trailhead provides a great location to connect to southern Irvine’s extensive trail network. The trailhead is located at the end of Sand Canyon Road and marks the beginning of the Quail Hill Loop Trail, an easy two-mile natural surface trail at the foot of Quail Hill that is open to the public from dawn to dusk. Irvine's southern wilderness is also accessible via docent-led activities that begin at the trailhead. Quail Hill loop is the only wilderness trail in the Natural Landmarks that allows dogs – on leashes of course.