Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve Not Just for the Birds

Educational signage such as this one welcome visitors at the parking lot before entering the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve. PS - parking is free!

Learn something new at the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve in Huntington Beach.

On our way home from Balboa Island and Peninsula, we made a quick stop off of Pacific Coast Highway in Huntington Beach to check out the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve. With funding, preservation, educational, and restoration efforts via the Bolsa Chica Conservancy and management oversight by the California Department of Fish and Game, the wetlands preserve open to the public in Huntington Beach showcases just a small portion of a much larger ecosystem indigenous to this Southern California coastline. And thank god it’s here for us to enjoy: It is simply gorgeous.

T and Grandma heading off in search of birds and other wildlife (and sticks and rocks) out at the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve.

A lovely sitting area for bird watching and enjoying the views (and it also looks like a perfect gathering spot for tours and the like) along the backside of the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve.

Many paths encircle and cross the wetlands, allowing the public to safely explore the area without disturbing the many varieties of birds and other native species of the area. People can get pretty close to the shallows of the wetlands from the bridges and paths where folks can peek down into the shrubs and grasses for hidden nests or other habitats. There is also a back area of the wetlands completely fenced off that houses the main breeding and nesting grounds for many of the creatures that call the area home.

T runs along the long, wooden bridge on his way into the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve in Huntington Beach.

T climbs rocks at the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve.

I wish we’d had more time on this visit to see more, but at least we now know what is across that long and narrow wooden bridge that we regularly drive by. I know T wants to go back very soon, too. Why wouldn’t he? It’s an open area with sticks and rocks and walking (running) paths galore. Great times for a little boy… great times.

T takes a break from skipping down paths to skip a few rocks at the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve.

For information on tours and hikes or other educational or informational programs at the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve, please contact the Conservancy here.

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