Nature Study

Birding Basics Class: Join MTRP Trail Guide and experienced birder Winona Sollock and Ann Sixtus for an educational bird identification class. Increase your enjoyment of Nature by learning 5 simple techniques to identify birds at a glance. You will also learn how to use a field guide, so bring one along if you have it. Classes meet at the Visitor Center in Classroom A on the last Saturday of every month (except Nov. and Dec.) from 1:00 to 2:30 p.m. The class is free and open to the public, with no reservations required.

Hawk Talk: Stop by the Visitor Center on the first Sunday of each month between 9:00 a.m. and 12 noon to meet local falconer, Bob Gordon, and his feathered friend, “Huxley” the Harris Hawk.  Get up close and personal with this majestic bird of prey, while learning all about what makes it so special.

Trail Guide Training: An annual training from January through March is conducted for people interested in learning about the natural and cultural history of Mission Trails, and then sharing this knowledge with others on interpretive nature walks throughout the park.  This 11-week training involves a three-hour classroom session every Wednesday evening, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., and a three-hour field study session on Saturday mornings, from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m.  The class curriculum covers a variety of subjects, including ecology, botany, geology, history, birds, mammals, reptiles, insects, Kumeyaay culture and more!  Trail Guide graduates are expected to share their new knowledge on at least one guided walk per month.

In addition to leading guided nature walks, MTRP Trail Guides also staff Discovery Tables in the Visitor Center; help out with special events, attend monthly Trail Guide meetings with special guest speaker presentations.  The training program is really a lot of fun, is with a great group of people, and we are always looking for fresh new faces to join the MTRP Trail Guide team. 

Contact Ranger Chris at or at 619-668-3277 if you are interested in the next training session.