To Our Ojai Community:

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we recover from the damage from the Thomas Fire on our trails. In the coming months trails will likely open and close depending on rain and changing trail conditions. Click here for current information and trail notifications »

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In today’s changing climate, land protection and restoration are critical to protecting Ojai’s natural capital. Scroll down to learn more about the transformation of the Ojai Meadows Preserve and what’s in store for the future of the Parkway Preserve!

These projects are only the beginning. Please support our endeavors to protect and restore our valley, and donate today.

Restored and Adored

To reestablish the wetland, botanists, biologists, and restoration specialists designed a plan to excavate the construction fill, creating a basin that drains flood water from Hwy 33, Nordhoff High School, and the Taormina neighborhood into the preserve. Over the years, OVLC staff, with the assistance of thousands of volunteers and schoolchildren, have planted and cared for thousands of native plants in the preserve, creating vital wetland habitat.

Today, Tomorrow…

The Ojai Meadows Preserve provides important ecosystem services:

  • Storm water now fills the pond and creates habitat for plants and wildlife, instead of flooding Hwy 33 and Nordhoff High School.
  • Native plantings began in 2006, and continue to this day. Where weeds once flourished, thousands of native plants now thrive.
  • Nearly 200 bird species now call the preserve home for part or all of the year (there were fewer than 100 before restoration began).
  • Easily accessible and centrally located, tens of thousands of preserve users enjoy the trails each year.
  • The nursery and preserve are a living laboratory for local schools.

With the help of volunteers and school groups, we continue to plant and care for hundreds of oak trees and native plants each year. OVLC is expanding its native plant nursery to meet our growing restoration needs, and those of private land owners in the valley.

…And New Beginnings

In 2021, the OVLC acquired 28 acres of land at the confluence of the Ventura River and Cañada Larga Creek. If you visit the property today, you will see degraded habitat with over 60,000 cubic yards of fill dirt (and probably wonder why we love this land!). Restoring the land will require major earth work and habitat enhancements, but we are confident that we can do this—just like we did at the Ojai Meadows Preserve.

In the not so far off future, this property will protect and restore critical wildlife habitat along the Ventura River, provide opportunities to mitigate stormwater flooding, and increase neighboring communities’ access to open space along the Ventura River.