Education & Community Outreach

Photo: David Hagen

WALKS, TALKS & LECTURES

We offer a variety of opportunities for kids and adults to experience and learn about the shrub-steppe and the importance of protecting these wild spaces.

Volunteer “Trail Guides” are trained on the botany, wildlife, and geology of Conservancy lands. As part of the Education Program, Trail Guides host events (on and off our trails) including Earth Day, Fall Colors, and a Winter Lecture Series. Trail Guides lead community walks at Snow Mountain Ranch and Cowiche Canyon and teach visitors about the rich diversity of wildlife that inhabit CCC lands, the unique geology and history, and the incredible web of life that connects us all.

 

The CCC Trail Talks program offers school groups
an environmental education experience in the field.

 


 

CCC encourages the use of Conservancy property for educational field trips, science projects, community service projects, and other customized curriculum. Please let us know if you are using CCC lands for educational purposes.

COMMUNITY WALKS

CCC Trail Guides host Community Walks on a variety of topics from butterflies to nature photography, and birds to geology. Walks are family friendly.

Cowiche Canyon Conservancy Hiking Recreation Shrub-Steppe Photo: David Hagen
Photo: David Hagen
Cowiche Canyon Conservancy Wildflower Erigeron Daisy Snow Mountain Ranch Hiking Recreation Shrub-Steppe

“TRAIL TALKS” FOR SCHOOL-AGE CHILDREN

Trail Talks is Cowiche Canyon Conservancy’s hands-on outdoor learning program for school-age children. Trail Talks is an interactive, educational, field trip program with learning stations and nature walks — all focused on the Web of Life at Snow Mountain Ranch. All field trips include a lesson on the Web of Life, and groups are able to pick from a variety of learning stations and nature walks including:

  • When Plants Talk
  • The Promise of Pollination
  • The Butterfly Life Cycle
  • Geology – Go with the Flow
  • Shrub-steppe Ecology
  • Stream Ecology
  • Restoration

Scheduling

To schedule your visit or learn more about Trail Talks, email info@cowichecanyon.org or call (509) 248-5065.

Planning Your Visit

Please consider the following conditions in planning your visit:

  • Limited parking is available. (Accommodations can be made for parking specialized vehicles, buses and vans.)
  • There are no permanent bathroom facilities, but there is a portable toilet available.
  • There is no drinking water. It is very important to bring adequate water for your planned activity.
  • There are no tables, chairs or covered shelters on site.
  • Visitors need to dress appropriately for the weather and wear shoes suitable for walking on uneven ground.
  • Children should be supervised at all times since the areas include steep rocky trails, cliffs, creeks, un-fenced bridges, and irrigation ditches.
  • School groups are responsible for providing an adequate number of chaperones in compliance with their school district policy, as well as insurance coverage during the time of their visit to the site.
  • You are visiting the natural habitat of a variety of plants, insects, animals, birds, reptiles and amphibians, some of which bite and sting!  Rattlesnake sightings are common in Cowiche Canyon in spring, summer and fall. Poison oak can be encountered in Cowiche Canyon. Be aware of ticks in spring and yellow jackets in the fall at Snow Mountain Ranch.
  • No specimen collecting.
Cowiche Canyon Conservancy Trail Talks Learning Interactive Hands on Program for Kids Snow Mountain Ranch Nature Walks Yakima, WA
Cowiche Canyon Conservancy Creek Hiking Trails Yakima, WA Conservation Photo: David Hagen
Photo: David Hagen
Cowiche Canyon Conservancy Snow Mountain Ranch Fall Colors Hiking Trails Yakima, WA Conservation Photo: David Hagen
Photo: David Hagen

WINTER LECTURE SERIES

Each winter, CCC partners with Yakima Valley College to offer a Winter Lecture Series which includes monthly talks on a variety of topics related to the shrub-steppe. Check back in the fall to see the schedule for 2019.

Past 2018 Lecture Series

 

January

“Biology & Conservation of Monarch Butterflies in the Pacific Northwest” by Dr. David James

 

February

“Demystifying Pacific Lamprey: History, Ecology, Biology, Threats & Restoration” by Ralph Lampman

 

March

“The Beauty of Burns & Value of Post-Fire Habitats for Wildlife” by Dr. Teresa Lorenz

Cowiche Canyon Conservancy Hiking Winter Frost Snow Mountain Ranch Recreation Shrub-Steppe Photo: James Legatt
Photo: James Legatt
Cowiche Canyon Conservancy Uplands Snow Hiking Shrub-Steppe Trails Yakima, WA Conservation Photo: David Hagen
Photo: David Hagen

EARTH DAY

CCC hosts an annual Earth Day event in Cowiche Canyon with talks and demonstrations on birds, life in the creek, butterflies, geology, and other related topics. Native plants and spring flowers are labeled along the trail. This is a self-guided hike along the trail through Cowiche Canyon with educational stations along the way. Trail guides are on hand to help guide participants to the stations.

Cowiche Canyon Conservancy Wildflowers Clover Cushion Phlox Hiking Trails Yakima, WA Conservation Photo: David Hagen
Photo: David Hagen
Cowiche Canyon Conservancy Meadowlark Bird Grass Snow Mountain Ranch Hiking Recreation Shrub-Steppe

FALL COLORS WALK

Experience the gorgeous colors of fall in the Yakima Valley with Cowiche Canyon Conservancy’s annual Fall Colors Walks. Fall Colors Walks take place the 3rd Saturday in October starting at 10 am at Snow Mountain Ranch. CCC’s volunteer Trail Guides offer family friendly walks and hikes of varying lengths. There is no charge to participate. Trails at Snow Mountain Ranch have been developed from old farm and game trails and are not paved. Walkers should come prepared with layers of clothing for variable weather, sunscreen, sturdy shoes, water and a camera.

Cowiche Canyon Conservancy Snow Mountain Ranch Fall Colors Hiking Recreation Shrub-Steppe Photo: David Hagen
Photo: David Hagen
Cowiche Canyon Conservancy Snow Mountain Ranch Fall Colors Hiking Recreation Shrub-Steppe Photo: David Hagen
Photo: David Hagen