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14758
California

Channel Islands National Park: Anacapa and Santa Cruz Islands

Explore the pristine ecology of Channel Islands National Park, discovering a wealth of unique flora, fauna and geology as you learn the islands’ story from local naturalists.
Rating (5)
Program No. 14758RJ
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,249
California

Channel Islands National Park: Anacapa and Santa Cruz Islands

Explore the pristine ecology of Channel Islands National Park, discovering a wealth of unique flora, fauna and geology as you learn the islands’ story from local naturalists.
Length
6 days
Starts at
1,249
Program No. 14758 RJ
Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
climate
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DATES & starting prices
PRICES
May 9 - May 14, 2021
Starting at
1,249
Jun 6 - Jun 11, 2021
Starting at
1,249
Aug 22 - Aug 27, 2021
Starting at
1,249
Sep 12 - Sep 17, 2021
Starting at
1,249
Oct 17 - Oct 22, 2021
Starting at
1,249
Nov 7 - Nov 12, 2021
Starting at
1,249
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
May 9 - May 14, 2021
Starting at
1,589
Jun 6 - Jun 11, 2021
Starting at
1,589
Aug 22 - Aug 27, 2021
Starting at
1,589
Sep 12 - Sep 17, 2021
Starting at
1,589
Oct 17 - Oct 22, 2021
Starting at
1,589
Nov 7 - Nov 12, 2021
Starting at
1,589

At a Glance

Relatively untouched by modern culture, California’s Channel Islands National Park is an oasis of natural splendor. Journey by boat and experience two of the five islands that comprise the park — Anacapa, with its steep sea cliffs and lighthouse, and Santa Cruz, the most diverse. Get up close to the island’s rich array of plant life, sea birds and mammals — some found nowhere else in the world – and explore Ventura like a local as you immerse yourself in the treasures of this region.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking up to two miles on uneven terrain. Climbing ladder and stairs.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Join local naturalists who add expert insight during expeditions to Channel Islands National Park.
  • Discover how the islands’ isolation has created a unique ecosystem as you study endemic plants, interesting geology and more.
  • Trace the human history from the native Chumash people to explorers, fur traders, ranchers and scientists.
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Don Morris
Don Morris retired in 2001 after enjoying a forty-one year career as a National Park Service archeologist, the last 16 years of which he spent at Channel Islands National Park. There he investigated and reported upon subjects ranging from historic shipwrecks and farmhouses to what are currently the oldest known human remains in North America, the Arlington Woman. In 1994, he worked as the project archeologist on the excavation of the most complete (94% or thereabouts) pygmy mammoth ever located on the Channel Islands.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Terri Blake
Terri Blake View biography
Terri Blake Dano lives in Santa Monica, California, along with her husband and two step kids. She graduated from California State University Chico with a bachelor’s in business and merchandising. Terri has been in the wholesale garment industry for over 25 years. Well regarded in her industry, she has enjoyed a rich and rewarding career as a Wholesale Representative. Born in San Francisco, Terri has explored the globe. Some of her favorite activities include skiing, paddle boarding and mountain biking.
Profile Image of Margery Spielman
Margery Spielman View biography
Margery Spielman is an internationally recognized environmental and marine artist, lecturer, naturalist and professional diver. An oceanography and scuba instructor, she is also a member of the Screen Actors Guild and has worked underwater on numerous films. Her freelance assignments for the Cousteau Society have included research logistics, diving, speaking and illustrating. Described as a visionary realist, she exhibits her watercolor paintings in major marine art expos from Hawaii to Paris.
Profile Image of Patricia Meyer
Patricia Meyer View biography
Founder and current donor relations/fundraising director of Friends of the Island Fox, Pat was born and educated in England, later earning an MBA from the University of Redlands. After retiring from a career in human relations and marketing, Pat joined the Los Angeles Zoo as a docent in 1994. While researching the story of the Island Fox for an ecology lecture, she met Tim Coonan, fox biologist at the Channel Islands National Park. With his encouragement, Friends of the Island Fox was formed in 2004.
Profile Image of Jennifer Perry
Jennifer Perry View biography
Dr. Jennifer E. Perry is an anthropologist who is interested in cross-cultural and long-term perspectives on human-environment interactions. She earned degrees in anthropology and Latin American studies from the University of San Diego. She worked in cultural resources management and was awarded a M.A. and Ph.D. in anthropology from UC Santa Barbara. Before joining the CSU Channel Islands, she taught at Pomona College for 10 years. At the core of her teaching and research are coastal societies, hunter-gatherer societies, and Native American societies.
Profile Image of Ken McAlpine
Ken McAlpine View biography
Ken McAlpine is an award-winning author who has written for various magazines ranging including National Geographic, winning three Lowell Thomas awards — travel writing's top award. Ken was born in Hong Kong and spent his childhood in Southeast Asia. He continued to travel throughout his life while writing, working on assignments from diving with white sharks to running the Inca trail to Machu Picchu. Ken currently lives in Ventura and likes to stand in his yard at night, looking at the stars.
Profile Image of Don Morris
Don Morris View biography
Don Morris retired in 2001 after enjoying a forty-one year career as a National Park Service archeologist, the last 16 years of which he spent at Channel Islands National Park. There he investigated and reported upon subjects ranging from historic shipwrecks and farmhouses to what are currently the oldest known human remains in North America, the Arlington Woman. In 1994, he worked as the project archeologist on the excavation of the most complete (94% or thereabouts) pygmy mammoth ever located on the Channel Islands.
Profile Image of Alicia Stratton
Alicia Stratton View biography
Alicia grew up as an Air Force brat, living in Japan, Texas, West Virginia, and South Dakota, then settling in Ventura. She is a licensed boat captain, certified SCUBA diver, and three units shy of my single subject-science teaching credential. She worked for The Nature Conservancy as a Naturalist, Island Packers as a Naturalist/Boat captain, and was the Research and Education Coordinator for the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary. She also volunteered on the committee that established marine reserves around the Channel Islands.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Channel Islands National Park
by National Geographic Maps
A National Geographic Trails Illustrated map of the Channel Islands at a scale of 1:25,000. Waterproof, durable and tear-resistant, it is the perfect map to take along to the islands.
Islands Apart: A Year on the Edge of Civilization
by Ken McAlpine
McAlpine travels solo through Channel Islands National Park in California for week-long stretches while returning to the mainland intermittently. He mixes both experiences in this meditation on contemporary American life.
National Audubon Society Field Guide to California
by Peter Alden
A compact, easy-to-use guide to 1,000 California trees, wildflowers, mammals, insects, birds and other flora and fauna.
Natural History of the Islands of California
by Allan A. Schoenherr, C. Robert Feldmeth, Michael J. Emerson (Illustrator), David Mooney (Illustrator)
A survey of the ecology, geology and human history of California's coastal islands.
The Golden Shore, California's Love Affair With the Sea
by David Helvarg
In this eminently readable and well-researched tribute, Helvarg, an environmental journalist and filmmaker, considers the crosscurrents of culture, history, economy and myth that come together on the state’s golden shores.
Santa Cruz Island: A History of Conflict and Diversity
by John Gherini
In this thorough history of the largest Channel Island, Gherini introduces the Chumash Indians who lived on the island in pre-Columbian times and details early European explorers and the Spanish-Mexican period, when the island became a haven for smugglers.
Images of America: Ventura
by Glenda Jackson
Local historian Jackson covers the history of Ventura, California, from the dedication of Mission San Buenaventura to its present status as the Gateway to the Channel Islands and home to more than 100,000. Includes archival photos.
California the Beautiful
by Galen Rowell (Photographer)
Rowell's exquisite photographs are accompanied by excerpts from Joan Didion, M.F.K. Fisher, Jack London, William Saroyan and many other luminaries in this celebration of the nature and spirit of California.
California's Channel Islands: A History
by Scott O'Dell
The Channel Islands, a string of eight islands off the coast of Southern California, are home to stunning landscapes and remarkable biodiversity. This scholarly work covers ecology as well as natural and human history.
A Guide to East Santa Cruz Island: Trails, Routes and What to Bring
by Don Morris
These tips for travelers to East Santa Cruz Island help them enjoy the island to the fullest.
Justinian Caire and Santa Cruz Island: The Rise and Fall of a California Dynasty
by Frederic Claire Chiles
This history of one of California’s Channel Islands covers everything from the island’s original Chumash population to its acquisition by the Nature Conservancy. Special attention is paid to the 50 years when the island was owned by Justinian Caire and family. The author, a descendant of the Caire family, uses family archives to flesh out his tale.
Images of America: The California Channel Islands
by Marla Daily
This Images of America installment introduces all eight of the Channel Islands, located off the coast of Southern California. Features archival photographs.
California, A History
by Kevin Starr
A lively short history in the excellent Modern Library Chronicles series, written by a renowned historian.





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