Nature Walks

Your Mission Trails Adventure Begins Here!

Interpretive nature walks are offered to enhance your appreciation of our open space and the unique beauty of San Diego’s natural environment. Join our Trail Guides on these walks to investigate first hand nature’s splendor as well as the historical, and cultural aspects of the Park. Walks are free and are open to the public with no reservations required. The trails used are easy, but have uneven surfaces and some involve steps. Be sure to wear sturdy shoes and a hat, put on sunscreen, and bring water. Walks are canceled if raining. For information about scheduling a special walk for your group, please scroll down the page.

From the Visitor Center: Trail Guides choose from three trails. The Oak Grove Trail leads to a small oak woodland with majestic coast live oaks and rare Engelmann oaks. The Visitor Center Loop Trail takes you through coastal sage scrub, chaparral, and riparian woodland habitats. The Riverside Grinding Site Trail leads to one of the archaeological sites in the park: grinding rocks used by the Kumeyaay Indians for food preparation.
Every Saturday, Sunday, and Wednesday, 9:30 to 11:00 a.m. Please note that there will not be walks on Christmas Day or New Year’s Day.

From the Campground: Trail Guides explore the east side of the park on the Grasslands Trail with stops at a Kumeyaay grinding rocks site and the picturesque Old Mission Dam overlook. Walks may include a visit to the lush riparian habitat of the Kumeyaay Lake shoreline, or a portion of scenic Oak Canyon, or the historic Old Mission Dam. 2nd and 4th Saturday of every month, from 8:30 to 10:00 a.m.

Wildlife Tracking Walks: Join experienced MTRP trackers for an adventure in Wildlife Tracking suitable for the whole family! Learn the art of discovering tracks and other signs left behind by the park’s seldom-seen wildlife. 1st Saturday of every month, from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m.

Bird Walks: Join MTRP birders for an adventure in Bird Watching! Discover some of the many resident and migratory birds in different areas of the park. Bring binoculars and/or a field guide if you have them. Walks begin in various locations, check Events Calendar. 3rd Saturday of every month, from 8:00 to 10:00 a.m.

Special Walks: Any day, any time, any place in the park – can be arranged for scouts, clubs, or other organizations of any fitness or mobility level. Contact Ranger Chris Axtmann at 619-668-2746 or  Please make requests at least ten days in advance.

For more information on walks, talks and other events in the park go to
the Events Calendar.