Point Reyes Headlands Winter Shuttle Bus System
On weekends & holidays, Sir Francis Drake Boulevard is closed beyond the South Beach Road junction from 9 am to 5:30 pm during favorable weather conditions. Bus service to the Lighthouse & Chimney Rock is provided from Drakes Beach. More »
2014 Harbor Seal Pupping Season Closures
From March 1 through June 30, the park implements closures of certain Tomales Bay beaches and Drakes Estero to water-based recreation to protect harbor seals during the pupping season. Please avoid disturbing seals to ensure a successful pupping season. More »
Operational Changes Took Effect on May 1, 2013
The Lighthouse Visitor Center is now only open Fridays through Mondays; closed Tuesdays through Thursdays, including Thanksgiving. The Kenneth C. Patrick Visitor Center is open on weekends and holidays when shuttles are operating. More »
Minor Globs of Oil Found at Point Reyes National Seashore since November 16, 1997
Contact: John Dell'Osso, 415-464-5135
Superintendent Don Neubacher reported that, since Sunday, November 16, thick oil globules called tar balls have begun showing up on the beaches of Point Reyes National Seashore. These tar balls are typically fist size or smaller, comprised of fresh, heavy, black oil. The oil was first spotted by visitors and National Park Service staff along Drakes Beach on Sunday morning. The U.S. Coast Guard immediately responded, investigated the situation, and collected oil samples.
Approximately 23 live oiled birds have been picked up at Point Reyes, 25 dead oiled birds have been seen, and approximately 40 more live, oiled birds were observed. Many sensitive and threatened species are at risk including snowy plovers, brown and white pelicans, northern fur seals, elephant seals, and harbor seals. Surveys of beaches began Sunday and will continue to occur with crews under the guidance of Point Reyes National Seashore, California Department of Fish and Game's Office of Oil Spill Prevention and Response (OSPR), and the Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary, a part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
If you see an oiled bird, do not attempt to remove it. Please call 800-228-4544 or notify a ranger of its location and the time when you saw it. The source of the oil is unknown and is currently under investigation.
Did You Know?
In addition to raising sea levels and temperatures, the increased concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is changing ocean chemistry by reducing the pH of the ocean. This decreased pH reduces the availability of minerals which marine organisms use to build shells and reef structures. More...