Trail to Bay
What is the Trail to Bay Challenge?
The Trail to Bay Challenge is free. Join our Educators on guided hikes offered throughout Chula Vista as you learn about the rich biodiversity of our local environment, ways to identify native wildlife and plants, and more. Living Coast cleanups also take place at various locations throughout the year. You will join other families and volunteers passionate about making an impact in their community and help clean up areas near the bay affected by trash and debris. You will also learn ways to conserve our planet, recycle, and compost by making small changes in your daily lives. Attend three hikes and one cleanup with the Living Coast to complete the challenge.
Groups that complete the Trail to Bay Challenge will get a family four-pack valued at $80 (one per household) and a Sustainability Hiking Pack.
Each onsite hike takes place on the Sweetwater Marsh trails. Take our shuttle to the entrance of the Living Coast. Plan to arrive 20 minutes earlier to allow for pick up and drop off time.
Onsite guided hikes are offered every Saturday at the Living Coast Discovery Center. For more information visit our Guest Adventures page.
All hikes are free and open to the public.
How to Prepare
Participants are encouraged to wear comfortable walking shoes, hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. It is also recommended to bring enough water for the hike, keeping in mind the time of year and temperatures. Dehydration can set in quickly, and it is recommended to bring half a liter of water per mile. Don’t forget to dress for the weather, bring a jacket and dress in layers, if necessary.
Although most sites allow leashed pets, we ask that you keep your pets at home to prevent any disruption to wildlife. Please do not litter or smoke on the trails. Guests of all ages are welcome, but an adult must be present for participants under the age of 18. Please limit phone conversations while on the hike as they are a distraction to your fellow hikers. We ask that these hikes be reserved for families and friends, large groups of 15 or more should inquire about a private hike option by contacting the Living Coast Education Department, email@example.com.
All locations have free parking options, but spots may be limited (Otay Lakes County Park has both paid and free parking). It is suggested to plan ahead and arrive early. All hikes will have a designated location for the group to meet along with a large canopy for identification located nearby the parking lot.
Families and friends are encouraged to join the Living Coast Discovery Center for clean-up events once per month. Locations will vary in and throughout Chula Vista. These opportunities will enable citizens to help make a difference in their community. As the host, the Living Coast will provide all necessary tools for the cleanups. Please dress appropriately. Prior to each cleanup, it is recommended you contact the Living Coast to confirm your spot and to receive important details and instructions. If you plan to complete the Trail to Bay Challenge you are required to participate in one clean up event. More information about upcoming cleanups and how to make a reservation can be found here.
Otay Lakes County Park
Join us as we discover the gorgeous views of the Otay River Valley, Otay River Gorge and San Ysidro Mountains. We will see the Otay Lakes Reservoir from various viewpoints and learn about the native plants and animals thriving in this protected space. This location has a small incline with a rocky terrain. Click here for directions and details.
Otay Valley Regional Park
Come with us as we become master trackers on the trails of Otay Valley Regional Park. Learn how to identify tracks of different animals and how scientists study scat (animal droppings) to learn about animal diets and health. This hike will take place along a flat gravel trail that is ranked easy and will have two length options. This hike is wheelchair & stroller accessible. Click here for directions and details.
This hike is offered most Saturdays at 11:15 AM at The Living Coast. Come walk the trails of the Sweetwater Marsh and learn about the importance of this National Wildlife Refuge to all living things. On the hike, we will focus on discovering the many different species of birds that depend on the Refuge, including the endangered light-footed Ridgway’s rail! This is our easiest trail and is wheelchair and stroller accessible. Click here for directions and details.
Join us as we walk the trails of Rice Canyon and discover the variety of native plants that can be found there. Learn about the important role native plants play in the ecosystem. We will also learn how the native Kumeyaay Indians used these plants in their daily life. This is a mild to moderate walking trail with some uneven surfaces. Click here for directions and details.
Join us as we hike and enjoy the breathtaking views from the top of Mother Miguel. We will have opportunities to see Sweetwater Reservoir, the Pacific Ocean, and even take a photo next to the Rock House. On our hike, we will discover what a watershed is and see the entire journey water takes from mountain to ocean. This is the most difficult hike and is best for more experienced hikers. Click here for directions and details.
Sweetwater River Trail
Join us as we check out the eastern part of the San Diego National Wildlife Refuge. The Sweetwater River Trail is located on the San Diego National Wildlife Refuge. The hike begins at the Sweetwater River Bridge and continues on to a looped trail. Click here for directions and details.
The Living Coast is proud to partner with the City of Chula Vista on the Trail to Bay Challenge.