Dripping Springs in Limestone Canyon-Trail Restoration
This spectacular and lush canyon includes thick oak woodlands, stream side habitats, year-round springs and an iconic geological formation called “the Sinks,” often compared to a mini-Grand Canyon. A rich diversity of plants and animals as well as an unusual variety of natural habitats make Limestone a true favorite among hikers, mountain bikers and naturalists of all types. Registration is required for docent-led programs due to the area’s sensitive habitat, but all programs are free.
The Irvine Ranch Conservancy is working hard to restore the canyon to its native habitat by removing invasive species of plants and birds. It takes a huge effort and a large volunteer crew to turn roads that where once used by cattle and sheep ranchers into singe track trails. This is done by individually planting native grass and plants that are produced at the seed farm run by the IRC. The Native Seed Farm began in 2009, and provides the public with a unique opportunity to actively participate in the restoration of sensitive habitats. The farm was created because of the huge need for seeds and young plants to support the Conservancy’s aggressive goal of restoring almost 5,000 acres of native habitat.
By restoring these trails not only do the native plants begin to outnumber the invasive non-natives, but it encourages the local wildlife to roam more freely. Limestone Canyon is home to Mule Deer, Coyotes, Bobcats, Skunks, Hawks, Red Headed Woodpeckers, Rattlesnakes, non-poisonous Snakes and even a Mountain Lion or two.
By volunteering you can have the opportunity to visit “Dripping Springs” an elevated Aquifer where spring water is dripping out of an earthquake fault down a fern covered rock face. This trail could be closed to the public for up to a year. So be one of the lucky few to see this beautiful landmark and volunteer!
Learn more by visiting the following website: http://letsgooutside.org/volunteer/public-volunteers/