Tecolote Canyon Natural Park is the kind of place rarely found in large American Cities, a refuge for plants and creatures of the natural world and people who want to escape, if only for a short while, from the modern world.
It is in San Diego and well worth while seeking for locals and visitors alike. It enjoys an interesting history, a refuge for Indians before the arrival of Spanish explorers, later a ranch. Only through the efforts of many interested citizens was it able to escape being just one more development in a City's urban sprawl.
This 900 acre jewel was named for the Owls that frequent the canyon along with a host of other native birds and animals. For the visitor the first stop should be the Nature Center which exhibits these residents as well as the recreational opportunities for people and a history of the area. Access to Tecolote Park can be made from both Highway 5 and 8. There are signs announcing its presence which intrigued us to investigate further.
It was in 1978 that pressure from interested citizen groups that called itself Tecolote Canyon Advisory Committee finally forced the City Council to acquire the land for a Park. Now a group called Friends of Tecolote Canyon exists with volunteers dedicated to keeping it all in its natural state.
We spent considerable time at the Nature Center and took some photos. Time did not permit us to enjoy any of the nine trails that enter the Park from several directions.
For more information on the Tecolote Park call the Nature Center at 858 581-9952 or on the web at www.San Diego.gov.
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