Volunteer: Tule Elk Docent

Tule Elk Docents help strengthen the connection with and foster stewardship of Point Reyes National Seashore among park visitors by helping visitors view, understand, and appreciate tule elk during the rut, or mating season. Docents educate visitors about the history of tule elk in California and in Point Reyes National Seashore and provide general park information and assistance to visitors.


  • Identify suitable tule elk viewing areas at the Tomales Point Trailhead (Pierce Point Ranch) and along the trail and set up spotting scopes for public viewing
  • Help visitors view, understand, and appreciate the tule elk by interpreting rut behavior and by educating visitors about tule elk natural history
  • Help visitors understand the history of tule elk in California and in Point Reyes National Seashore
  • Provide general park information and assistance to visitors
  • Use interpretive materials to help communicate information
  • Professionally represent the National Park Service by wearing an identifying docent vest and interact with visitors in a friendly, courteous, tactful, and helpful manner
  • Operate a two-way radio to communicate with fellow docents and park staff

Docents must possess an interest and desire to serve others; good oral communication skills; and abilities to interact with a variety of people and to work as part of a team and independently. Docents must also be able to tolerate long periods of standing in changing weather conditions and be able to carry up to 15 pounds of materials a distance of up to 1 mile.

Knowledge of the park and teaching experience is helpful.

Schedule and Time Commitment
Workdays are scheduled for 7.5 hours from 9:30 am until 5:00 pm. Docents are expected to work at least 6 weekend or holiday days from August through October.

New docents must attend a two-day Tule Elk Docent training in July.

Benefits to the Volunteer
Benefits to the docents include working in a beautiful park setting; experiencing and learning about Point Reyes National Seashore; receiving training from park managers about the park's tule elk and related resources; and deriving satisfaction in serving and educating a variety of park visitors while helping to protect the park’s tule elk.

Group Type
Individuals are encouraged to participate.

Minimum Age
Minimum age is 16. Volunteers under 18 must have a signed parental consent form. Please contact us (see below) for more information.

Housing and camping/RV sites are unavailable.

Application and Contact Information
Please apply under the Current Opportunities listing. For more information, contact Doug Hee at 415-464-5145 or by email.

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