Welcome to the James San Jacinto Mountains

What we do


One of the primary missions of the Natural Reserve System is to provide relatively undisturbed natural laboratories where scientists can conduct research on the workings of nature (or natural processes). Through these efforts we will be able to better coexist with the natural world upon which we depend.   The James and Oasis de los Osos Reserves are well equipped to meet this mission.   Both are protected field sites surrounded by extensive National Forest Service lands. The base camp at the James Reserve allows easy access to potential research sites on and off the Reserves, making them well suited to support a host of field oriented research projects.

Most research at the Reserves is conducted by scientists. However, we believe that nature can be explored through the lenses of all academic disciplines. Consequently, we encourage scholarly activities by non-scientific academics and professionals as long as the proposed research is consistent with the mission of the University of California Natural Reserve System.

In addition to research, the James Reserve supports and encourages training of new generations of scientists and citizens by providing hands on educational experiences studying the natural world. Students range from primary school to university levels and experiences range from one-day to multi-day outdoor class experiences.  At this time, the Reserve does not provide docent services nor direct supervision of or instruction for visiting classes. Though the use of the Reserve is primarily for research and instruction, public workshops and meetings can also be arranged.

To meet the diverse uses of the James, we have modern classroom and meeting spaces with internet connections and projectors, teaching collections of local fauna and flora, field supplies, a weather station, trail system, and a reference library. The James Reserve can provide lodging for over 70 people in dorm-style housing (4 units). All units are heated and have fully equipped kitchens and bathrooms but no bedding is provided. If you plan to stay in the dorms, bring everything you need to camp but a tent, including a flashlight, pillow, sleeping bag, towel, toiletries, etc. A campground provides space for at least 15 additional guests (5-7 tents). There are presently no facilities at Oasis de los Osos; however, primitive camping is permitted and access to restroom facilities and refrigeration can be arranged.