Forest Discovery Trail

Forest Discovery Summer Series!



The Forest Discovery Trail program is hosting a series of activities this summer, geared toward families with younger children who would like to learn more about the forest environment.

The series will cover three activities: Plant Patrol, Invertebrate Investigators, and Bird Surveyors. Each activity will run twice with the same content.  Let’s learn about the plants, bugs, and birds in the forest together!

The July theme is PLANT PATROL.

Location: In Peavy Arboretum - use the Arboretum Road entrance, and park in the Arboretum/Intensive Management Trail lot. It is a short walk on the paved trail to the Firefighter Memorial shelter from there.


  • Tuesday, July 19th, 12-1:30pm.
  • Friday, July 22nd, 12-1:30pm

Stay tuned for August and September dates!

Cost: FREE with registration. We will cap the sessions at 20 people.

What to expect: For each activity session, we will start with a demonstration and picnic lunch in the Firefighter Memorial Shelter before we head out into the forest to explore. Light snacks will be available, please bring your picnic lunch. Each session will take 1.5-2 hours. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Preparation: Folks should wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes, and be ready for the weather. Activities will be partly under the shelter, and partly in the forest. Bring water, a lunch, and your curiosity.


Register here!

Questions? Contact

We look forward to seeing you in the forest!

Are you ready to explore the Forest Discovery Trail? This program has been developed to honor Dr. William Ferrell, the first forest ecologist hired by the College of Forestry. Join the Forest Discovery Club on Facebook! Check out our list of online video resources.

Tour Materials


Follow the Forest Discovery Trail signs and stop at each designated area.  The cards below (in pdf format) will guide you in activities for each of the stops. You may want to download all the cards as one file on your smartphone or device before going out to the forest!

Forest Discovery Backpacks

Forest Discovery Backpacks contain the materials teachers and group leaders need to lead a Forest Discovery Program outdoor field trip. The backpack contains Activity Cards, assorted art supplies, and more to guide your adventure! Teachers and parents can check-out a Forest Discovery Backpack from the Research Offices by contacting the OSU Research Forests or clicking the link below.



Teacher's Guide

En Espanol

NEW! Forest Explorers Journal

We are excited to announce the newest addition to our Forest Discovery Program, the Forest Explorers Journal. This interactive journal is designed for 4th - 8th graders and is filled with activities and materials to inspire curiosity and scientific exploration about the history and ecology of the OSU Research Forests.

Click the link below to receive a free journal and borrow a journal field kit to help aid you in your explorations.





Already tested the journal? We'd love to hear about it. Please fill out your feedback forms here!