Tours meet 90 minutes before sunset at the South Site where docent guides meet attendees and give a presentation. Tours involve very little walking so you may want to bring a camp chair if you would like to sit and view the birds. It is recommended that you dress warmly, especially during the winter months as it can be damp and chilly. It is suggested that you bring binoculars and/or spotting scopes for up-close viewing but, you can easily enjoy the cranes with unaided eyes and ears. You may want to bring a light snack and water for your tour.
Portable toilets are on site. The one at North is ADA compliant.
Guides may take tour groups down Woodbridge Road via car caravan to see cranes and other wildlife using the grainfields and marshes along the road. Your docent guides are trained in crane ecology, the area's natural history and the Reserve's habitat management, and want your experience to be memorable and educational. Tours usually conclude a half hour after sunset with the anticipated fly-in of the cranes at the North Site where a viewing shelter allows us to be hidden from the incoming birds.
Cranes will be the focus of our tours as they may be observed here under most but not all conditions; however, we will also scout for other birds that use the reserve during the winter months.
- Directions to South Site (starting point for CDFW docent-led crane tours):
The Woodbridge Ecological Reserve / Isenberg Sandhill Crane Reserve is 45 minutes driving time from downtown Sacramento or 30 minutes from Stockton.
- From Sacramento, take Interstate 5 south exit on Peltier Road. Turn left under I-5 to the frontage road which is Thornton Road. Turn right (south) on Thornton Road and travel 2 miles to Woodbridge Road. Look for sign “Phil & Marilyn Isenberg Sandhill Crane Reserve.” Turn right (west) on Woodbridge Road and continue 2.5 miles to a pullout on left side of road. This is the South unit of Reserve, our meeting area. The tours will begin here with docent introduction.
- From Lodi, SF Bay Area via Hwy 12, Stockton or Los Angeles head north on Interstate 5 and exit on Turner Road. Go left (north) on frontage road which is Thornton Road 1 mile to Woodbridge Road. Look for sign “Phil & Marilyn Isenberg Sandhill Crane Reserve.” Turn left (west) on Woodbridge Road and continue 2.5 miles to a pullout on left side of road. This is the South unit of Reserve, our meeting area. The tours will begin here with docent introduction.