Cachuma Lake Nature Program Programs & Activities

Click here for the Monthly Nature Program Flier  

Weekly Programs:

Nature Cruises 

  • Let our Park Naturalists guide you on a 2-hour Lake Cruise aboard the Osprey. A 30-passenger pontoon boat for easy wildlife viewing and personal comfort, the Osprey explores the Lake as Naturalists follow nature's serendipity to reveal the area's natural and cultural riches.
  • Please Note: All cruises are canceled on Christmas Day. 
  • Click Here for complete information

Junior Rangers

  • Saturdays year-round*: 12:30 - 1:30
  • Program starts at 12:30 pm sharp
  • Join a Cachuma Lake Park Naturalist to learn about Cachuma Lake wildlife and earn a cool badge! Parents are invited to participate too. Kids under the age of ten must be with an adult. To help earn your badge, bring a bag of litter or recycling that you collected from Park grounds. This protects animals and conserves natural resources.
  • Groups bringing over 10 participants are asked to call in advance. (805) 688-4515. Limited to 30 participants, first come, first served.
  • * Fee: $3
  • For more information, go to the Junior Ranger Program

Nature Walk

  • Saturdays year-round: 10 to 11:30 am
  • Meet at the Nature Center 10:00 am
  • Free with Park Entry Fee
  • Join a Cachuma Lake Park Naturalist or Park Volunteer for an easy-paced 1/2-mile walk exploring the oak woodland and lakeside ecology on the Oak Canyon Trail. Bring water, hats, and please, no pets.
  • Groups bringing over 10 participants are asked to call in advance (805) 688-4515. Limited to 20 participants. First come, first served.
  • Private nature walks can also be arranged on different days or times by calling the Park Naturalist to make arrangements.
  • For more information, call the Park Naturalists at (805) 688-4515

Summer 2017 Programs:

Nature Nights

  • Summer Fireside Programs: Friday and Saturday nights at 8:00 p.m. Friday June 23 - Saturday Sept 2, 2017, at the Fireside Theater. See the full schedule below.
  • We offer a variety of fun-filled evening entertainment. Join us under the stars for a movie night, live music, storytelling, or an interactive natural history presentation by a Santa Barbara County Park Naturalist or special guest presenter. Specific programs will be scheduled in Spring 2017.
  • Free with $10 per vehicle Park Admission
  • Astronomy Nights 2017: Join the Santa Barbara Astronomical Unit for a stellar presentation on celestial highlights at the Cachuma Lake Fireside Theater. Telescopes will be available for viewing the night sky after the program. For more information call (805) 688-4515.
  Date     Event 
 Friday, June 23  Movie Night
 Saturday, June 24  Live Music: "The Bob Bishop Band" (6:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.)
 Friday, June 30  Movie Night
 Saturday, July 1  Star Party
 Friday, July 7  Movie Night
 Saturday, July 8  Live Music: "The Bob Bishop Band" (6:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.)
 Friday, July 14  Movie Night
 Saturday, July 15  Star Party
 Friday, July 21  Nature Talk: "Hobby Beekeeping in Central California"
 Saturday, July 22   Live Music: "The Free Radicals" (7:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.)
 Friday, July 28  Nature Talk: "Will Our Oaks Survive?"
 Saturday, July 29  Star Party
 Friday, August 4  History Talk: "Jeep to Jeep"
 Saturday, August 5  Star Party
 Friday, August 11  Movie Night
 Saturday, August 12  Live Music: The Free Radicals" (7:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.)
 Friday, August 18   Live Music: "The Bob Bishop Band" (6:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.)
 Saturday, August 19  Star Party
 Friday, August 25  Movie Night
Saturday, August 26  Star Party
 Friday, September 1  Movie Night
 Saturday, September 2  Star Party

Annual Events & Field Workshops

Creepy Creatures of Cachuma Lake 

Saturday, October 14, 11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. . Location: Lawn at the Neal Taylor Nature Center. Free with $10 per vehicle Park Admission

The Cachuma Lake Recreation Area and Neal Taylor Nature Center conspire to offer this wonderfully creepy event! Fall under the spell of living owls, bats, spiders, snakes, and scorpions. Touch a collection of skulls and bones that will rattle your bones! Enjoy enchanting live music, make a mask, and get a face painting.  Witches will lurk on the sidelines with punch and popcorn. This event wouldn't be possible without our special guests: Alice Abela with her menagerie of insects, snakes, and spiders; Santa Barbara Audubon's Eye's in the Sky program, including Max the owl; Todd Baron the magical Balloon Man, and Namie Jamie and the Captain with lively acoustic music. A mini-garage sale, which includes a variety of small treasures, including used books, will also be open in the nature center garage from 10:30-1:30. For more information call county Park Naturalist Rosey Bishop at (805) 688-4515, or email

The Neal Taylor Nature Center

  • A visit to the Nature Center alone is a worth a trip to Cachuma Lake. The Center is a private, non-profit organization full of interactive exhibits for children and adults about Cachuma Lake, the Santa Ynez River Watershed, and local cultural and natural history. Santa Barbara County Parks at Cachuma Lake Recreation Area works with the assistance of the Center on several popular programs. For full information about the Neal Taylor Nature Center, their hours and programs, please go here.