Event Ratings are a guideline to help you to choose an outing that matches your fitness and ability.
Distance and elevation gain are dependent on the outing, the property, and the guide.

1 Boot = Easy: One to three miles and less than 300 feet elevation gain/loss.

2 Boot = Moderate: Two to five miles and generally less than 600 feet elevation gain/loss.

3 Boot = Moderately Challenging: Four to seven miles with the possibility of multiple elevation gains/losses of 600-1000 ft.

4 Boot = Difficult: Four to seven miles and/or elevation gains/losses, likely in excess of 1000 feet.

5 Boot = Strenuous: Four to eight miles with multiple and/or significant elevation gains/losses.

6 Boot = Extreme: Five OR fourteen miles with multiple and significant elevation gains/losses.



This fire trail was created due to a recent fire in the Sutter Buttes. We will hike the trail observing exposed geology, erosion, and new vegetation. 





Summit AscentSUMMIT ASCENT—Dean Place/North Butte

One of our most challenging treks, this route is a steep, 1,000-foot push straight up North Butte, off trail with no easy switchbacks. Only register for this hike if you are in very good physical shape and don’t suffer from vertigo.

Limit is 15. Cost is $45.  





Wildflower StudyWILDFLOWER STUDY—Shaeffer Ranch

Spring rains cause the dry Buttes hillsides to turn into a verdant, colorful, wildflower garden. Bring your hand-lens, camera, and wildflower field guide.  




Brockman ChallengeDOUBLE TRANSECT HIKE—Dean/Bragg

This hike consists of the High Buttes Transect and the Low, all in one day. It will cover 12-14 miles with steep, rugged ascents and descents. You will begin and end on the same property. Only register if you are in top physical shape. Meet by 7:00 am. Limit is 15. Cost is $60. 



Full Moon or Moonlight StrollMOONLIGHT STROLL—Dean Place

Observation and reflection on nature’s balance will be our focus on this meander through oak groves and gentle hillsides under the lunar glow of the moon. Bring food and a flashlight; you may want an easily carried cushion or seat.
Meet at 3:00 pm. Limit is 15. 



Geology TrekGEOLOGY TREK—Bragg Canyon

Discover the violent origins of this tiny mountain range with Volcanologist Brian Hausback. Brian reveals clues to 1.5 million years of geologic history, uniquely accessible here in the Buttes. Cost is $45.




Brockman ChallengeBROCKMAN CHALLENGE—Brockman Canyon

This is a 6-mile strenuous and steep ascent between the tallest of ridge tops. It is a narrow trail that traverses a precipitous incline with a 1000-foot elevation gain. Midway you will be peering deep into the hidden valleys




Canyon Trek - Brockman CanyonCANYON TREK—Brockman Canyon

Travel to the center of the Sutter Buttes with steady climbing on uneven ground. There will be frequent stops to examine the natural elements providing excellent views. Cost is $35. 


Wild Nature in the ButtesWILD NATURE IN THE BUTTES—Dean Place

Learn about the exciting diversity of animals and plants in the Buttes and the fascinating

adaptations that allow them to survive here. Your leader will be Gene Trapp, Professor

Emeritus of Bio. Science at CSU, Sacramento. 






Nature TrekNATURE TREK—Brockman Canyon

Join us for a leisurely climb especially suited for casual walkers and nature lovers. We will hike back into the canyon and up to a ridge that can offer views north to Shasta and Lassen and south to Mt. Diablo!  



Wildflower StudyWILDFLOWER STUDY—Canyon Experience/Bragg

Spring rains cause the dry Buttes hillsides to turn into a verdant, colorful, wildflower garden. Bring your hand-lens, camera, and wildflower field guide. Trek will be about 6 miles with a significant elevation gain. Cost is $45. 




Photographer's OutingPHOTOGRAPHER’S OUTING—Dean Place

This event is designed for photographers of all levels. We will caravan/carpool to a ranch in the middle of the Buttes. There will be several guides so that you may scout and choose different locations for your photos. Meeting time is 7:00 am. Steady rain will cancel; occasional showers will not.

Sun, April 5.    to 


Ridge Hike - EastEAST RIDGE HIKE—Shaeffer Ranch

The Shaeffer Family will host hikers on their ranch on the north side of the Buttes. Hikers will explore this ranch that has been in the same family since the 1860’s. Hike will include possible views of North Butte and Peace Valley. Lassen and Shasta can often be seen in the distance. 



Ancient Crater Lake TraverseANCIENT CRATER LAKE TRAVERSE—Bragg

At the very center of the Sutter Buttes volcano are the deposits of a volcanic lake, over a mile wide and at least 1000 feet deep. The layered deposits are known as the "lakebeds." Join Brian Hausback, volcanologist from Cal State Sacramento, to traverse and explore, bottom to top, and side to side, the picturesque and mysterious remains of this formerly energetic environment. The traverse is strenuous and physically demanding. It requires strength, stamina, and good, solid boots. Our hiking route (some off-trail scramble) climbs steeply across the central part of the volcano and will provide expansive panoramas of many parts of the Buttes and beyond. Total distance will be 6-8 miles with about 1000-2000 feet of elevation gain and the same elevation loss. Only register if you are in very good physical shape and are keen to see and learn some interesting geology. Meet at 7:00 am. Limit is 15. Cost is $45.  


Birds in the Buttes

Witness the birds in and around the Sutter Buttes with naturalist, Pete Sands. We will check varied habitats and look for spring migrants. Meet at 7:30 am. Limit is 15; not suited for younger children.  




Bat Research OutingBAT RESEARCH OUTING—Dean Place

A rare opportunity for a limited number of participants

to witness mammal biologist David Wyatt conducting bat

research in the Sutter Buttes. Meet by 2:00 pm. Bring a

folding chair or cushion/seat.  




Butterflies & WildflowersBUTTERFLIES & WILDFLOWERS—Dean Place

Join butterfly expert Greg Kareofelas on this outing that will stress both spring wildflowers and the spring flight of butterflies. We will learn the difference between plants important for nectar sources for the butterflies and the plants that their caterpillars depend on: “Host Plants.” We will also see the relationship of habitat and diversity. We may see the California State Insect, the California Dogface




An enchanting outdoor setting at the base of North Butte (weather permitting!). You will enjoy an afternoon stroll or hike, hors d'oeuvres, wine and beer, a catered dinner, light classical music, desserts, and pleasant company. Unique items

are featured at the silent auction and drawing. Pre-registration is required. Cost is $100 per person; sorry, there is no hiker discount for this fundraiser.