Dear ,

As the days get longer and warmer, we're already looking forward to this year's River Valley Fest!
This year's event, our biggest of the year, will be on Sunday, October 13th at L'Auberge Del Mar! Mark your calendars and look for more information coming soon!

Thank you for your continued support of the San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy and the San Dieguito River Park! Don't forget to renew your Conservancy membership and invite your friends, too!
News & Updates
San Dieguito River Park JPA Celebrates 30th Anniversary!

The San Dieguito River Park is celebrating 30 years of environmental preservation, recreation and education. On Sunday, June 9th, 2019 join us for the San Dieguito River Park 15k / 5k / 1 k / Tot Trot trail run! With all of the rain we have had the lake is full, so come run or walk along the beautiful trails adjacent to Lake Hodges. The courses traverse both sides of the Interstate 15 freeway along nicely maintained trails with light rolling hills. Courses are well marked with ample aide stations. The event will be professionally timed with live onsite and online results.  Visit to register before prices go up, and don't forget to enter the discount code: celebrate30years

Following the event plan to take a tour of the 19th century Sikes Adobe house, visit the North San Diego Certified Farmers' Market, enjoy activities at the Community Fair, enjoy live music by the Prairie Sky band, and don't forget to browse the auction items. 

The Community Fair starts at 9am and will have over 25 partners organizations in attendance. Organizations like the County of San Diego Parks and Rec, the cities of San Diego and Escondido, San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy, San Diego Archaeological Center, California Wolf Center, State Parks, Project Wildlife, San Diego Tracking Team, San Diego Mountain Biking Association, KS Nature Photography, Sierra Club and many more!
Bird of the Month: Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
by SDRP Ranger Dave Hekel

Blue-gray Gnatcatchers are pale, blue-gray birds with grayish-white underparts and a mostly black tail with white edges. The underside of the tail is mostly white. The face is highlighted by a thin but obvious white eye ring. It produces nasal high-pitched sounds that always sounds like a small cat to me. It has earned the nickname "little mockingbird" due to its ability to imitate songs of other birds.

The energetic Blue-gray Gnatcatcher rarely slows down, fluttering after small insects among shrubs and trees with its tail cocked at an angle. It is a carnivore and its diet is based on insects, spiders, and small invertebrates. Despite its name, the blue-gray gnatcatcher rarely eats gnats. It moves its tail sideways to expose insects hidden below the leaves. Small prey is usually swallowed in one piece, while still alive.

Blue-gray gnatcatcher is the only migratory species of gnatcatchers. It travels to the south at the beginning of autumn. They mate for a lifetime and build cup-shaped nests using bark, plant stems, and grass. They also construct nests in trees using spider webs and lichens to camouflage it, making the nest look like a knot on a branch.

Wow! Thanks to the support from REI members, the Conservancy has been awarded $6,823 to support trail building, stewardship, maintenance, and enhancements in Gonzales Canyon! 
Congrats Coast to Crest Trail Challengers!
Liz Belloso in Santa Fe Valley
35 people completed the Coast to Crest Trail Challenge in April!

Congratulations to:
John & Holly Venaas
Danni W.
Jeremy McMillen
Lily Dong
Christopher Flanagan
Anna Tink & Trish Johnson
Kelly Persky & Kara Walker
John & Joe Duncan
Pam Davis
Stephanie Prolong
Liz Belloso
Cathy Pautz
Trixxie Land & Brent McDonald
Annett Parris
Donna Patricio
Karen Hartung & Kelsey La Chusa
Wanda Martínez
Teresa Clanton
Brad & Jennifer Zenz
Julie Perry
Diane Lech
Chris & Jamie Nastav
Dan Conger
Mike Conger
Sandra Grow
Rich Grow
Kelly Mamer

Learn more about the Coast to Crest Trail Challenge here.
Coming Up
5/18 - Furry Friends Hike at Crest Canyon

Bring your dog(s) and join the San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy for an easy and family-friendly Furry Friends Hike through beautiful Crest Canyon (approximately 2.6 miles round-trip). This hike will begin promptly at 9 AM and space is limited to 25 people. As a friendly reminder, please ensure to bring enough water for you and your furry friend while on our hike.

WhenSaturday, May 18th, 9:00 am - 11:00 am
Where2351 Lozana Rd., Del Mar

May Events

Sundays, 5/5, 5/12, 5/19, 5/26:
North San Diego Certified Farmers Market & Farmhouse Tours
Thursday, 5/2:
Saturday, 5/4:
Spring Summit Hike
Sunday, 5/5:
San Dieguito Monthly Bird Count

Thursday, 5/9:
Volunteer to Collect Water Samples

Saturday, 5/11:
San Diego Murder and Mayhem Presentation and Book Signing
Sunday, 5/12:
Volunteer Trail Maintenance

Crest Canyon Mother's Day Volunteer Clean-up
Saturday, 5/18:
Volunteer Habitat Restoration

San Dieguito Lagoon Bird Walk

Furry Friends Hike at Crest Canyon

Gonzales Canyon Volunteer Clean-up

Family Discovery Day

2019 SDCVA Wine Festival
Saturday, 5/25:

Sunday, 5/26:

What Happened in April
Water Bugs Survey 

We had about as much fun as humanly possible in March during our Water Bugs event at the Santa Fe Valley Open Space / Crosby Habitat Management Area!

Five terrific citizen scientists (including two young future entomologists) joined us to dip our nets in the river and explore the incredible world of creatures that live below the surface. Local naturalist and environmental educator Bob Forthun treated our group to dragonfly nymphs, crane fly nymphs, midges, water striders, and water boatmen (among other species).

Herp Hike

Our latest Herp Hike took us on a five-mile walk around Lake Hodges, where we spotted some lizards and a skink! Local expert Jeff Nordland shared his knowledge about local reptiles and amphibians along the way.

Coast to Crest Trail Challenge Guided Hike - Santa Fe Valley

We're one hike closer! We had a wonderful time exploring Santa Fe Valley with this group! 

Watershed Explorers: San Diego Archaeological Center

Families took a trip back in time at the San Diego Archaeological Center. They learned about archaeology, artifact analysis, and completed the Archaeology Quest at the museum!
Full Moon Hike

We didn't see too much of the moon on our full moon hike (though it did peek out a bit), but that didn't dampen our spirits!

Creek to Bay Cleanup at River Path Del Mar

We had a terrific Creek to Bay Event at the River Path Del Mar Phase II last month! We had a fantastic turnout from SDG&E, including around a dozen employees and their families, and a half dozen families from National Charity League.   

We removed over 100 pounds of trash and approximately 1,500 pounds of green waste (invasive plants). We also weeded, mulched, and watered our two 2019 planting areas and thoroughly weeded our 2018 Earth Day planting area. Several volunteers joined us at Viewpoint afterwards to celebrate their hard work.

Crest Canyon BioBlitz

We had a great time at the Conservancy's 2019 BioBlitz at Crest Canyon Open Space Preserve last month! The BioBlitz, organized in conjunction with the global City Nature Challenge, brought out 9 eager volunteers on a beautiful Sunday morning.  

Together we documented the biodiversity of the City of San Diego's Crest Canyon Open Space Preserve using the iNaturalist smartphone app. We recorded dozens of species of plants (including several rare species), as well as several birds, reptiles, and insects. This data will help land managers in their efforts to plan future land management activities in the Canyon.