Tours, Walks and Hikes

Docent-guided Tours for Special Groups

Reservations are required in order to ensure that everyone has a pleasant experience. Special groups, such as scouts, will be accepted for guided tours in most situations. Call the Nature Center at (626) 398-5420 for reservations as early as possible to avoid having your date taken by another group.

Self-Guided Group Tours

Reservations are required in order to ensure that everyone has a pleasant experience. Self-guided tours can be reserved for Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays at any time of day; however, we still ask that the group provide at least one adult for every ten children in order to provide adequate supervision. Call the Nature Center at (626) 398-5420 for reservations as early as possible to avoid having your date taken by another group.

School Tours

If you would like to plan a school field trip to Eaton Canyon, your school district must have a MOA (Memorandum of Agreement) in place with the County of Los Angeles Parks & Recreation for any and all use by a school, including picnics, field trips, athletic programs, aquatics, physical education classes, tournaments, graduations, et al. If your school does not yet have a MOA in place with the county, please plan a couple months in advance to apply. Parks and Recreation will work with you to complete the process. If you cannot complete the process, you will unfortunately be turned away upon arrival.

Please read the PDF for more complete information on the MOA and how to apply.

Guided school tours can be reserved from October through the end of the school season on Wednesdays and Fridays from 10:00 a.m. to noon. Grades 2-6 are eligible. We ask that the school provide at least one adult for every ten children. Call the Nature Center at (626) 398-5420 for reservations as early as possible to avoid having your date taken by another school. These free field trips, which support the California State Science Standards, focus on the natural environment, including California native plants and animals.  The students are given the opportunity to appreciate and interact with nature.

Bus grants are available to help defray the cost of transportation for Title 1 schools and schools with particular financial need.  Applications available upon request.

Family Nature Walk

Date & Time: Every Saturday morning, weather permitting, from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Where: Eaton Canyon Nature Center, 1750 N. Altadena Drive, Pasadena, California 91107

For Information: Call (626) 398-5420

Join us outdoors for a guided walk in Eaton Canyon Natural Area. This walk is geared to families, including small children, and everyone is welcome. Walking shoes, sunscreen, water, and a hat are recommended. The walk is free to the public. Meet in front of the building.

Co-sponsored by Eaton Canyon Nature Center Associates and the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation.

Moonlight Walks

GROUPS OF TEN OR MORE MUST ALWAYS CALL FOR RESERVATIONS!

Moonlight Walks are held in the Spring and Summer on Friday nights, usually closest to the full moon (see schedule below).

*Note that heavy rain or dangerous conditions may cancel all walks WITHOUT PRIOR NOTICE!

Dates: Dates in 2023 to be announced.
Time: The hike begins at 7:30 pm – please check in at the Nature Center by 7:15 pm

Cost: $2.00 Donation per person (including children). This helps cover the costs of refreshments. Wear any Eaton Canyon T-shirt or hat (or join the ECNCA on the night of the walk) and the walk is FREE! For those who join ECNCA, their entire group (up to 5 people) get the walk for free

Wear sturdy walking shoes or boots.
Dress appropriately for the weather.
Bring water. (No glass containers)

Please do not bring your dog (except service dogs.)
Flashlights are discouraged.

Gift shop will be open before & after the walk.
Refreshments are served after the walk.

Can I bring a group to the walk?

How big a group?

Groups of 10 or more must make advance reservations. Groups must provide a contact name and phone number to be confirmed. Large groups (over 15 people) are subject to the approval and confirmation of the walk coordinator (call 626-398-5420). We will limit the number of large groups that can attend on any one night.

What is the age range of the group?

There must be one adult (at least 19 years of age) per 10 “kids.” At night, we discourage strollers. (Children need to walk or be carried.) It is challenging to lead a walk and watch small children. Parents/adults need to be monitoring their children’s behavior to ensure their safety and the safety of others (we can not be babysitters).

We cannot guarantee a large group will be able to stay together or that a small group (i.e. a scout group or a birthday party group) will be the only people within a walking group. We need to look at the overall picture and not just the situation with one particular group. If you want a “private” walk just for your group, you should not attend the Moonlight walk.

The contact person should go to the Information Desk when the group arrives (we’ll also verify the final group head count). The contact person should make the donation for the entire group at this time (instead of having everyone come up individually).

What if I/we arrive late for the walk?

  • The walks start at 7:30 p.m.
  • Please check in at the Nature Center 15 minutes prior to the walk.
  • People can not be in the park after dusk unless they are with an official canyon program. Late arrivals will be asked to leave the park. No exceptions.

How much does it cost?

We ask for a donation of $2.00 per person, children included. And we are very flexible about this!

What types of walks are there? Is it fast or slow? Can a small child keep up?

The groups can be faster or slower, have more educational information or less educational information depending on the folks present, their ages, and their interests. We try to group folks by their general preferences, such as families with small children in the same group, families with older children in the same group, etc. Bottom line, our goal is to make the walk groups as evenly split as possible.

We cannot and will not exclude anyone from a particular group. (For example, we were asked for an adult-only group. Based on the makeup and number of people that showed up for the walk that night, this was not possible. We would not exclude children from one group in order to meet the requests of a couple of adults.)

What do I do when I get there? Where do I go?

When you arrive, go to the Information Desk inside the Center where we will be taking donations.

After you receive a walk sticker, if it’s early, you can look around the Center. At the time the walk is scheduled to start, we will ask folks to go out into the patio where the walking groups will be organized.

General Information

  • Anyone being disruptive or uncooperative during the walk will be asked to leave the park.
  • No dogs allowed on the walk (except service dogs).
  • Children must be accompanied by a responsible adult.
  • Bring water in unbreakable containers.
  • Dress appropriately for the weather.
  • Flashlights are discouraged
  • If bugs are a problem for you, bring or wear bug repellent. (Bug Repellent is available for purchase)
  • This is a natural area and we do have snakes, coyotes, etc. We ask everyone to be aware and be safe.
  • If you wear an Eaton Canyon shirt, the walk is “free.” If you join the ECNCA on the walk night, your walk is also “free.”
  • The gift shop will be open before and after the walk
  • Refreshments served following the walk
  • Moonlight Walks will be cancelled, without notice, if there is any rain or nighttime conditions are deemed to be unsafe.

Bird Walk

Date & Time:  PROGRAM TEMPORARILY ON HOLD

Where: Eaton Canyon Nature Center, 1750 N. Altadena Drive, Pasadena, California 91107

For Information: Call (626) 398-5420

Description: Join us outdoors for a bird walk. Meet at the building. Bring your binoculars, shade hat, and water, but not your dogs, please. The walk is free to the public.

Co-sponsored by Eaton Canyon Nature Center Associates, Pasadena Audubon, and the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation.

Plant Walk

Date & Time:  PROGRAM TEMPORARILY ON HOLD

Where: In front of the Eaton Canyon Nature Center, 1750 N. Altadena Drive, Pasadena, California 91107

For Information: Contact the California Native Plant Society – San Gabriel Mountains Chapter

Description: Go on a leisurely walk, about 2 hours, through the native plant garden that surrounds the Center and into the nearby wild areas. The walk is different each time — what’s leafing out, flowering, in seed, etc., determines what your leader will talk about — and different leaders bring different points of view.