It’s set to become hub for year-round youth environmental education and outdoor recreation programs

PASO ROBLES —  In a landmark achievement for the preservation of natural landscapes and the promotion of outdoor education, Friends of Camp Natoma announced the preservation and partnership of the historic 7X Ranch. This significant milestone marks the beginning of a new chapter for Camp Natoma and the 7X Ranch, as it is set to become the hub for year-round youth environmental education and outdoor recreation programs.

Camp Natoma and neighboring 7X Ranch, nestled in the heart of the Adelaida district of Paso Robles, each have long protected the region’s rich heritage and natural beauty. Thanks to the dedicated efforts of the 7X Advisory Committee with Friends of Camp Natoma, this pristine expanse of land has been safeguarded from potential development, ensuring its preservation for generations to come.

Founded in 1941, Camp Natoma has been a cherished institution, serving the youth of San Luis Obispo County for over eight decades. The camp has relied on the support of generous donations and volunteers to continue its mission of providing immersive wilderness experiences that catalyze the development of resilience, promote self-growth, and inspire a love for nature.

“We are elated to share the news of our successful preservation of the 7X Ranch,” said Emily Zbin, executive director for Friends of Camp Natoma. “This achievement is a testament to the unwavering commitment of our organization to the well-being and development of our youth, by protecting these vital outdoor spaces. We are honored to bring new programs to life and preserve the 80 acre ranch, to fulfill the trust of legendary local rancher Dee Fitzhugh.”

The expanded offerings will include family programs, day camps, retreats, and environmental education. Collaborations with local schools, community groups, and youth organizations will offer a diverse range of outdoor activities.

Friends of Camp Natoma is now seeking lead legacy donors and program sponsors. The community is invited to learn more about Camp Natoma by visiting

Feature Image: Kids skip across rocks at Camp Natoma. Photo courtesy of Camp Natoma