The El Moro Elfin Forest is full of surprises. Although it lies just on the edge of a neighborhood, near a school, and close to busy South Bay Boulevard, it feels a world apart. The winding boardwalk path brings you to lookout points high above the estuary and salt marsh and then pulls you deep under the cover of pygmy live oaks in Rose’s Grove. And, though the preserve covers only 90 acres, it boasts eight distinct habitat types. (You can read about some of these distinct plant communities in our Native Plant blog series.) Each season brings new blossoms that support bees, hummingbirds, and other pollinators. (You can expect to see buck brush and fushiaflowered gooseberry among other flowering plants this winter.) Wetter months lead to falling leaves and mushrooms poking up from the forest floor.
The photographs below show just a few of the beautiful things the Elfin Forest has to offer.
Learn more about the El Moro Elfin Forest
- Find a map of the different plant communities in the Elfin Forest.
- Visit the forest during one of their Third Saturday walks. These informative walk-and-talk sessions let you start your morning off with a leisurely stroll and some new information. On December 15, Estuary Program Restoration Projects Manager Carolyn Geraghty will lead a walk that focuses on the estuary and the state of its eelgrass beds. On January 19, join Barbara Renshaw and Jeff Reifel for a walk-and-talk focused on native plants with some stops for sketching along the way.
- Read about the continuing efforts of the Los Osos and Morro Bay chapter of the Small Wilderness Areas Preservation Society (SWAP) to conserve and restore the Elfin Forest.
Help us protect and restore the Morro Bay estuary!
- Donate to the Estuary Program today and support our work in the field, the lab, and beyond.
The Estuary Program is a 501(c)3 nonprofit. We depend on funding from grants and generous donors to continue our work.
- Support us by purchasing estuary-themed gear from ESTERO. This locally owned and operated company donates 20% of proceeds from its Estuary clothing line and 100% of Estuary decal proceeds to the Estuary Program. Thank you, ESTERO!
- Purchase items from the the Estuary Program’s store on Zazzle. Zazzle prints and ships your items, and the Estuary Program receives 10% of the proceeds. Choose from mugs, hats, t-shirts, and even fanny packs (they’re back!) with our fun Estuary Octopus design, our classic Estuary Program logo, or our Mutts for the Bay logo.
Thank you for your support!