November 23, 2012. On the day after Thanksgiving, several patrons decided to opt out of the shopping frenzy of Black Friday and instead spent their Friday morning enjoying the peace and quiet of The Reserve at Rancho Mission Viejo. Executive Director Laura Coley Eisenberg led the Hike Off Your Thanksgiving event that featured a moderately strenuous walk along the North Ridge Trail to Wilson’s Camp.
The mid-70’s temperature, soft light and fall colors made for a picture perfect walk. Along the way, patrons heard about how the geology influences the types of vegetation communities that occur on The Reserve. At the top of North Ridge Laura discussed two of The Reserve’s vegetation communities, native grasslands and coastal sage scrub, the species that inhabit them and the management measures that The Reserve uses to maintain these communities. At Wilson’s Camp the group enjoyed their Thanksgiving leftovers under the shade of several Coast Live Oak trees.
A group photo was taken at the Portola Riders monument to the California Vaquero where Laura explained Rancho Mission Viejo’s commitment to the preservation of the ranching way of life. The route back followed the Sycamore Loop Trail that ducks in and out of the shade of sycamore and oak woodland and through patches of sunlit grasslands.