Visiting Our Preserves
Whether for exercise, bird watching, spectacular scenery, or just to commune with nature, we invite you to visit our preserves.
Please remember - these are preserves, not parks. Their primary purpose is to protect native habitat and wildlife, not to provide a place for human recreation.
For a safe and rewarding experience, and to help us keep our preserves open to the public, Please:
Take water, especially in hot summer months.
Wear appropriate clothing for the conditions and don't hike alone.
Pack out all trash - help us keep the land litter-free.
Dogs must be on a leash, for their safety as well as to protect wildlife. Please PICK UP THE POO!
For information on the impact dogs have on land, read
"The Effects of Dogs on Wildlife".
Do not disturb plants or wildlife.
Our Preserves are wild areas and habitat to a rich variety of flora & fauna. Remember, this habitat is their home. Please be aware:
- rattlesnakes can be found on any of our preserves. While most active in warm months, they can be out even in winter during warmer days. Do not stray off trails.
- mountain lions range through some of our preserves and have even been spotted at a few of the preserves within town.
- coyotes can pose a danger to small dogs that stray from owners.
- poison oak is plentiful in riparian areas and can grow close to trails, and the oils can be picked up on the coats of animals.
The FLC now has over 2600 acres of protected land. 660 acres are easements and 1976 acres we own and maintain in 11 Preserves. Most of these preserves are open to the public and have trails. Select any preserve listed below for more information, photos & a locator map.
Appleton Preserve - 22.98 acres of riparian habitat along La Canada Rd
Bonsall Preserve - 27.36 acres of largely inaccessible wetlands at NW corner of Mission & Hwy 76
Dinwiddie Preserve - 14.5 acres across from Palomares House on S. Stagecoach Ln
Durling Preserve - 184 acres in the DeLuz area. Closed to public due to biological studies and sensitive habitat.
Engel Family Preserve - 10.37 acres off Sumac Rd. Short trail to bench and sweeping views to east.
Los Jilgueros Preserve - 43.5 acres on S. Mission Rd N of High School with over 2 miles of looping, gentle trails. Download map.
Karen Tucker Preserve at Hellers Bend - 48.55 acres at south end of Heller's Bend Rd, just off S. Mission. Steep trail to views.
Margarita Peak Preserve - 1206 acres, elevation 3193ft - highest peak in San Diego County west of I-15. Closed to public due to sensitive habitat.
Monserate Mountain Preserve - 340 acres just east of I-15. 1.5 mile trail to top for views to ocean and mountains.
Palomares House and Park - 1.57 acres with historic farmhouse, gardens, memorial tile walkway and wildlife sculptures.
Rock Mountain Preserve - 78 acres on Sandia Creek Rd. ~1.5mi N of Santa Margarita River. 1.5 mile looping trail to Bryant Creek and views.
See our Chart of Preserves for printable directions, GPS coordinates, and trail information.
For Google Terrain Map of Preserves click here.