Wetter, Smarter—and Happier
Go ahead, get your feet wet learning about the grey seal, California sea lion and brown pelicans. But, let’s start at the beginning. American Trail centers on the landscapes and animals that define the spectacular Pacific Coast—many of which have come back from the brink of extinction, and are now thriving thanks to conservation efforts.
Exhibits begin at the headwaters of a stream that courses down a valley towards the Pacific Coast exhibits. Surrounded and framed by mature native oak and tulip trees, visitors are immersed in a typical hardwood forest and see river otters, American beavers, grey wolves and bald eagles. At the base of the stream, submerge (not literally) into an incredible underwater view of California sea lions where a wave machine mimics the ocean. Then, plunge into (yes, literally) the Tide Pool, a shallow wave pool open for “wading,” featuring model sea stars, barnacles and mussels and offering a cool retreat during the summer months.
Each exhibit’s design is carefully planned to provide physically and mentally stimulating toys, activities and environments for the animals. Each enrichment is tailored to give an animal the opportunity to use its natural behaviors in novel and exciting ways, like a raven painting and beavers felling trees, making their own exhibit.