About Our Activities

The Nature Friends (Die NaturFreunde) was founded in Austria in 1895, at the time the access to wilderness areas and winter sports was limited to the affluent. Through cooperative efforts, Nature Friends built and maintained shelter houses, making it possible for the working man and woman to spend his/her leisure time in recreational activities such as camping, hiking, skiing, etc.

This organization spread throughout the world coming to the United States in 1910.

It was in the spring of 1920 that a group of members joined to build the Los Angeles branch and started construction of a facility in nearby Sierra Madre which was inaugurated in 1924

Today, our needs are similar, With increased leisure time and limited outdoor recreational facilities, the Nature Friends plays an important role. We are a non-profit cooperative organization perpetuating both interest in outdoor life, recreation and conservation.


Our outdoor activities include:

Hikes, both locally and from our mountain lodges.
Pack trips, both back-pack trips and organized wilderness trips. Camping at mountains, desert, beaches and rivers.
Picnicking and nature study in nearby places.


Our conservation activities include:

Participation in conservation issues
Nature walks, lectures, etc.
Participation at conservation conferences.
Membership in conservation organizations.


About Our Clubhouses and Lodges

Nature Friends maintains lodges, cabins and clubhouses throughout the world and extends privileges to all its members.

The local clubhouse at Sierra Madre, just a few miles northeast of downtown Los Angeles located in the foothills above Pasadena, is the focal point of our social activities and meetings.

The San Jacinto cabin is located at 6500 feet in the San Jacinto Mountains near Idyllwild. This rustic lodge, in a wilderness area, provides an attractive retreat for hikers, campers and vacationers.

The Heidelman Lodge, located near a famous ski area in the High Sierras in Northern California, is excellent for winter and summer vacationing.

Local clubhouses are also maintained in Oakland and Muir Woods in the San Francisco Bay area.

The Nature Friends International maintains over 750 club houses and lodges in more than 15 countries.


Our Social Activities include:

Movies and slide shows
Visits to cultural Centers
Visits to conservation areas
Folk Dancing
Parties and dances
Musical Concerts
Great food
Friends and fellowship


Nature Friends Los Angeles is a Private Membership organization. Its facilities are NOT open to the general public. All Nature Friends activities are by invitation only. We reserve the right to refuse admittance to any person for any reason. Please call ahead before you visit our location and arrange an appointment. Do not come unannounced. We often have private events at our locations, and we appreciate your not disturbing them with unannounced visits.