Who We Are

Working to connect trails in the coastal San Diego wetlands, we help people experience nature and inspire a love for protecting the land. The Nature Collective (formerly the San Elijo Lagoon Conservancy) is a group of scientists + nature enthusiasts who want future generations to appreciate – and preserve – the living world.

Press Releases

Making news as we offer things to do in North County San Diego, and beyond!


Nature Collective Announces Grand Opening for Harbaugh Seaside Trails, February 22

The newest open space for public enjoyment in coastal North County will be dedicated in a private donor sunset ceremony on Saturday, February 22, 2020. Harbaugh Seaside Trails is the three-acre coastal overlook, designated permanent open space for all, linking Cardiff-by-the-Sea and Solana Beach along historic Coast Highway 101.

Please see approved photo section below for downloadable images.

Cardiff State Beach Living Shoreline Dedicated 

North County San Diego residents and officials today celebrated the opening of the Cardiff State Beach Living Shoreline project. The half-mile coastal area located at Cardiff State Beach was created to add a ‘living shoreline’ sand dune system to protect Coast Highway 101 from ocean surges.

Please see approved photo section below for downloadable images.

Improvements Begin on North County’s Harbaugh Seaside Trails

A view of the Lagoon and Pacific Ocean from the site of Harbaugh Seaside Trails, expected to open in early 2020.

Encinitas Environmental Award:

City of Encinitas Mayor Catherine Blakespear awards the Encinitas Excellence in Environmental Stewardship Award to Doug Gibson, San Elijo Lagoon Conservancy Executive Director and Principal Scientist on October 7, 2018 at the annual Surfing Madonna Beach Run. Photo by Jim Wang

Approved Photos

You are free to use these photos with permission as long as you include the photographer’s credit and send an email with the link to where they are being used to [email protected].


Inside the donor monument + Harbaugh Seaside Trails
Photo by Nature Collective


Donor Monument Sunset View, designed and photographed by public artist Betsy K. Schulz


L-R: Doug Gibson, Nature Collective Director; Jewel Edson, City of Solana Beach Mayor; Joe Balla, The Harbaugh Foundation Director; and Doug Gillingham, Immediate Past President of Nature Collective – Ribbon Cutting at Sunset February 22, 2020
Photo by Nature Collective, courtesy Jewel Edson


Visitors tour the wave-shaped trail at Harbaugh Seaside Trails

Photo by Nature Collective

Media Resources

Impact Report 2017: Rooted in Flight

Impact Report 2017:
Rooted in Flight

Lagoon Tidings Magazine

Lagoon Tidings Magazine

Lagoon Connections Blog

Lagoon Connections Blog

Read Blog

Lagoon Views e-Newsletter

Lagoon Views

Read More

Reach Out

Please direct all media inquiries to Doug or Jennifer:

Doug Gibson

Executive Director | Principal Scientist

Jennifer Bright

Development + Communications Director