Wind Wolves Preserve
The preserve is an ecologically unique region where the Transverse Ranges, Coast Ranges, Sierra Nevada, western Mojave Desert and San Joaquin Valley converge. Due to elevation ranging from 640 to 6,005 feet, the preserve has an impressive array of landforms and habitats that serve as a critical landscape linkage and wildlife corridor between the Coast Ranges and Sierra Nevada. At 93,000 acres, Wind Wolves is the west coast's largest non-profit preserve. An important conservation outcome of TWC's ownership is that TWC led a Tejon Ranch Working Group of conservation organizations that resulted in a plan to double the target amount of conserved land on the neighboring Tejon Ranch to over 230,000 acres.
Tule elk were reintroduced to the Wind Wolves Preserve, the southern most extension of their historic range. The elk herd has grown to more than 200 elk and the California Department of Fish and Game estimates the preserve can support up to 2,500 elk. Currently the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is placing stillborn calves on the preserve for the California Condor, which can be seen regularly. When the elk herd reaches 2,000, elk will die weekly of attrition, which will aid the condors in becoming free living once more.
On the San Joaquin Valley floor, the preserve is a 30-square-mile veritable sea of grasslands with remnant stands of saltbush. These grasslands are home to the endangered San Joaquin kit fox and blunt-nosed leopard lizard, and one of the largest stands of the endangered Bakersfield cactus. Rolling grasslands rise from the valley floor and transition into classic California blue oak and valley oak savanna with extensive riparian wetlands. The oak savanna rises into juniper and pinyon forests that ascend into stands of ponderosa pine and big cone spruce.
At 93,000 acres, Wind Wolves Preserve is the West Coast's largest nonprofit preserve.
An important conservation outcome of The Wildlands Conservancy’s ownership has been TWC's influence on preserving the neighboring Tejon Ranch. When a national land trust struck a deal to save 100,000 acres of Tejon Ranch, leaving the remaining 170,000 up for grabs, TWC started the Tejon Ranch Working Group with representatives from 10 environmental organizations. We brought in development experts and investment analysts who showed how clustering density on 30,000 acres could affect the conservation of 240,000 acres with better shareholder certainty. A version of the TWC proposal was implemented by Tejon Ranch with the backing of the environmental community.
At Wind Wolves, The Wildlands Conservancy offers free outdoor education programs in which over 165,000 children have participated. The Wind Wolves Preserve is open to the public daily from 8 am to 5 pm for hiking, mountain biking, and picnicking. Tent camping is available by advanced reservation. There are seasonal wildflower and wildlife viewing tours by vehicles. For more information, call 661.858.1115.
16019 Maricopa Hwy.
Bakersfield, CA 93311
Programs and Activities
All programs are offered at no charge to participants. Reservations are required. To RSVP, call Wind Wolves Preserve at 661.858.1115,
or e-mail your request to email@example.com.
A slow-paced hike through riparian, saltbush, and oak woodland habitats to discover the birds that live in these areas. We will drive to different habitats so you can see more of the preserve! Hike is led by Naturalist & birder Megan. All ages and experience levels.
Celebrate the earth by creating EarthArt from natural materials found during a short guided hike by a naturalist. Then, assemble your own unique artwork. All artwork will remain on display for future viewing.
Parents come out and enjoy a FREE outdoor activity with your little ones. Activities vary every month from bird watching and bird nest building, painting masterpieces in nature, and reading children-friendly books outdoors. Fun for all ages! **Birding activity includes a small hike**
Full Moon and Black Out Night Hikes
The two-hour Full Moon hike will start just before sunset and end after dark. Naturalists will discuss nighttime wonders including nocturnal animals, fluorescent minerals, bioluminescent insects, and constellations. Bring a dinner to enjoy before the hike begins at sunset. All ages (no strollers please).
Contrary to the Full Moon hike, this two-hour hike during the new moon offers a very dark environment, and is ideal for star gazing. Naturalists will discuss nighttime wonders such as nocturnal animals and sensory awareness activities. Black-lights may be provided to discover glow in the dark critters, and to see how we stand out compared to our dark environment. Bring a dinner to enjoy before the hike begins at sunset. Ages 6 and up (no strollers). Please note that the starting times for this hike vary according to sunset time. Please bring flashlights!
Movies in the Canyon
A relaxing evening awaits for visitors who come up to Wind Wolves Preserve for a picnic dinner, an optional small hike, and an environmentally friendly movie, all while being surrounded by the beautiful San Emigdio Canyon. Bring your picnic dinner, chairs, and blankets. *All movies shown are appropriate for children*
El Camino Viejo Wilderness Hike
Naturalists will lead a 4-6 mile hike through wilderness that once was the route of the wagons traveling between El Pueblo de Los Angeles and early San Francisco. The hike will begin at the El Camino Viejo trailhead within San Emigdio Canyon, heading south into the lush wilderness with chances to see bears, mule deer, extraordinary bird life, unique geological features, and more. This hike is appropriate for hikers aged 7 and up. Bring your own water and lunch. The El Camino Viejo trailhead is located 5 miles south of the main Crossing parking lot at the entrance to San Emigdio Canyon. This trail has been enhanced for the betterment of our hikers to enjoy true wilderness within the heart of San Emigdio Canyon. The San Emigdio Express service can be used for transport to the El Camino Viejo trailhead for hikers. Feel welcome to join us on our guided hike through this wilderness or to come on your own and use the San Emigdio Express to transport you to and from the trailhead. Happy Trails!
Outdoor Survival Preparedness
Kids and their parents learn how to stay safe and sound in nature. Your naturalist will lead activities and demonstrations. Kids will receive a safety whistle, lanyard and certificate. Ages 4 to 15. No strollers please.
San Emigdio Express
On weekends our tour Van or Bus will make trips up and down San Emigdio Canyon, allowing visitors to “hitch” a ride along the way. Express runs start at 8:30am, 12:30pm, and 3:30pm. Catch a ride with us to see more of our beautiful canyon!
The Wildlands Conservancy is proud to offer backcountry adventures throughout the expansive landscapes of Wind Wolves Preserve. Visitors will be able to see views encompassing the San Joaquin Valley and the lush hills and mountains tucked away in the backcountry of the preserve, truly a hidden gem in Kern County! The tours will include wildlife sightings, natural history, Native American history, and so much more! The tour vehicle has an air conditioning and heater system, for the comfort of our riders. Please call for more details.