Field Trips

Lassen Volcanic National Park makes an excellent classroom and offers educational activities in both the summer and winter months. Field trips are often self-led - read further on this webpage for ideas. Field trips may also include a pre-scheduled Ranger-led Education Program or overnight camping at the Volcano Adventure Camp. Lassen Volcanic's ranger-led education programs are designed to meet the individual needs of classes and CA State curriculum standards. Programs are very popular and dates fill quickly, so make reservations early.

The following documents apply to all types of field trips within the park.

Pre-Visit Planning Guide (pdf, 413 KB)


Self-Led Field Trip Opportunities

We invite you to consider the following activities and resources for use during your Lassen field trip.

Audio Tours & Podcasts

Discover self-guided tours, the roadside audio tour, and podcasts for Lassen Volcanic National Park.

Geology Discovery Hunt

Use the exhibits at the Kohm Yah-mah-nee Visitor Center or Loomis Museum to help your students learn more about geology in the park. Ask a ranger for the handout.

Lily Pond Nature Trail

Lead your students on an easy one-mile loop trail along lake shores, forest edges, and through a portion of the rock avalanche area called Chaos Jumbles. Stakes along the trail correspond to numbered paragraphs that explain points of interest and natural features. Guides can be obtained at the trailhead across the highway from the Loomis Museum.

Cinder Cone

Lead your students on this moderate four-mile round-trip hike to Cinder Cone volcano. Numbered posts correspond to stops in an informative leaflet. Guides can be obtained at the trailhead in the Butte Lake day use parking area.

Public Ranger-led Programs

Education groups are welcome to attend a summer public ranger-led programs during their regularly scheduled times. Summer ranger-led programs are generally offered late-June through early-September. Winter programs for education groups are by reservation only and are generally offered early-January through late-March. If bringing an education group any time of the year, we suggest you make a reservation for an education program.

Distance Education Not Offered at this Time

Lassen's education program is unable to offer virtual classroom visits due to connectivity limitations in the park.

Interpretive Waysides

Wayside exhibits that interpret park resources are found throughout the park including along the park highway, on the Lassen Peak trail, on the Bumpass Hell boardwalk, and along the Devastated Area Trail.

Visitor Centers

The Kohm Yah-mah-nee Visitor Center (year-round) and Loomis Museum (summer only), offer park information, interpretive exhibits, and educational bookstores. The Discovery Center offers educational exhibits and a science lab and is open by reservation only.


Education Fee Waivers

National Park Service Academic Fee Waiver Criteria for Applicants

National Park Service (NPS) regulations allow school groups and other bona fide national and international academic institutions to obtain a waiver for park entrance fees, provided that the visit is for educational or scientific purposes, and the resources or facilities the group proposes to use support those purposes. Academic fee waivers are not granted automatically. Applicant groups must show they qualify for the waiver. There are three criteria the group must meet to qualify for an academic fee waiver: eligibility, educational purpose, and relevance of park resources or facilities. These criteria are detailed below:

Academic Fee Waiver Criteria:

1. Eligibility

Applicants must prove they are a bona fide academic institution by submitting one of the following:

  • A statement confirming educational or scientific tax-exemption from the IRS or the applicant’s national, state, or local tax authority: or

  • A statement, from a bona fide academic institution, confirming that the group is visiting for the purpose of providing transferable educational credit based on a curriculum; or

  • A statement of accreditation, or recognition as an academic institution, from a recognized national, regional, state, or local authority at the applicant’s location.

2. Educational Purpose of the Visit

Applicants must provide a written statement confirming that the visit supports a specific curriculum for which academic credit is offered. If the group is on a commercial tour, the applicant must state how the tour supports the curriculum.

3. Relevance of Park Resources or Facilities

Applicants must provide a written statement identifying the park resources and/or facilities that will be used to support the educational purpose of the visit, and how they are relevant to that purpose.

How to Apply for an Academic Fee Waiver at a National Park

If you meet the criteria above, submit the following to the address below. Submit your request at least two weeks before your visit.

  • A Fee waiver application. (doc, 95 kb)
  • A cover letter, on letterhead, explaining what the educational purpose is and how it is related to park resources. (A general statement that the visit is for “educational purposes” is insufficient.) If your group is using a commercial tour company, the group (not the company) must apply for the fee waiver, and must state how the tour supports the curriculum. See Educational Purpose of Visit, above.
  • Current, official documentation of eligibility such as described above. It is insufficient to merely state or imply this on the organization’s letterhead. Your fee waiver request cannot be approved without one of these documents. See Eligibility, above.

  • Provide the name of the course and a brief description. The applicant must be providing educational credit hours based on a specific course of instruction.

  • Please include the name and correspondence address of the institution; contact names(s) with telephone/fax number(s) and email address; approximate date and time of arrival and departure; approximate number of vehicles; areas you plan to visit; and approximate number of students and chaperones, including faculty.

One (1) chaperone is allowed free entry for each:
20- College students
10- High School students
5- Elementary School students

  • State in your letter that you understand fee waivers are allowed only for academic institutions that are using the park for educational purposes and the planned trip meets these requirements.

  • Email the fee waiver application and other application materials to e-mail us.

  • When you arrive, please provide a printed copy of the approved fee waiver for each vehicle in the group.

Please be aware…

  • Fee waivers are not available at entrance stations.

  • Academic fee waivers do not include camping or other activity fees.

  • Academic fee waivers cannot be granted for hardship factors.

  • Service, civic, or fraternal organizations, such as Scouting, Rotary, and Elks, do not qualify for an academic fee waiver unless the group meets the criteria above.

  • “Blanket” academic fee waivers for all national parks are not issued or accepted. Groups must submit separate requests to individual parks for approval. A list of parks and contact addresses is at

If your request is approved, you will receive an academic fee waiver. Each vehicle must present a copy of the approved fee waiver at the park entrance station. If your request is denied, you will receive a letter from the park explaining why your group does not qualify. If required material is not submitted, the park will attempt to contact and assist you. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the park fee office at 530-595-6121 or sent an email. Download a copy of these instructions. (doc, 36 kb)

Last updated: December 17, 2023

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Mineral, CA 96063


530 595-4480

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