Coast to Cactus: The Canyoneer Trail Guide to San Diego Outdoors is much more than a hiking guide. Written by the San Diego Natural History Museum Canyoneers, it is the new “bible” for really getting to know and appreciate the county’s biodiversity while exploring firsthand. The guide has 250 hikes, each with its own map and photograph, hike description with mileage, elevation gain/loss, difficulty rating, directions to the trailhead with GPS, trail use, special features, and type of habitat(s) found on each hike. Each hike has a focus on a species or natural/cultural history feature associated with that hike.
The book complements the Museum’s new 8,000-square-foot permanent exhibit – Coast to Cactus in Southern California, which helps the visitor understand the region’s diverse ecosystems and why it is one of the world’s biodiversity hot-spots. Use this guide to personally experience San Diego’s diversity.
Canyoneers are Citizen Scientists and volunteers who have had comprehensive training by Museum scientists and local experts on the natural history of the region. Canyoneer hikes teach appreciation for the great outdoors. When you hike with a Canyoneer, you are encouraged to stop, look, listen, touch, smell, and examine—to understand that everything is linked together. The Canyoneers are one of the few trail-guide groups nationwide affiliated with a natural history museum rather than a park or reserve. They have provided free guided tours to parks and open spaces in San Diego County since 1973. Now, with this new guide, one can go on a hike with their own virtual Canyoneer to explore coastal shores to urban parks, backyard canyons to rural foothills, and from forested mountaintops to desert badlands and washes.
Purchase of this book supports the San Diego Natural History Museum’s mission: “to interpret the natural world through research, education, and exhibits; to promote understanding of the evolution and diversity of southern California and the peninsula of Baja California; and to inspire in all a respect for nature and the environment.”