Ranger programs provide the opportunity for visitors to learn more about the natural and cultural wonders of Point Reyes National Seashore. Discover history hidden in plain sight, explore new horizons on a guided hike, or plan your visit around one of our special events. Browse the Park Calendar below to find the perfect program for you!
Regularly Scheduled ProgrammingPlease note that some programs are seasonal. Refer to the calendar for the most accurate listings.
A Look into the Lens
Get an up-close look at the intricate clockwork and enormous first order Fresnel lens housed inside the historic Point Reyes Lighthouse. During this program, a park ranger is on site to explain how the lighthouse works and what life was like for the many keepers who made their living there. Access to the lighthouse requires a strenuous walk down and back up 313 stairs, roughly equivalent to climbing a 30-story building. The stairs close when weather is hazardous, or the winds are above 40 mph (64 kmph).
Weekend Ranger Programs
Come join a Park Ranger to learn more about Point Reyes National Seashore's natural and cultural history. Topics may cover earthquakes and plate tectonics, the Coast Miwok, Francis Drake, the U.S. Lifesaving Service, or area flora and fauna. Browse through the Calendar below or stop by or call the Bear Valley Visitor Center at 415-464-5100 x2 x5 for additional information about scheduled programs. Some programs may require up to a 1.6 kilometer (one mile) walk on easy to moderate trails. Meet at 11 am at the Bear Valley Visitor Center, unless otherwise noted.
Morgan Horse Ranch Open House
Drop by the historic Morgan Horse Ranch to meet the Morgan Horses that call Point Reyes home and participate in a variety of ranch activities such as grooming, roping, leatherworking, and horseshoes! Rangers and ranch volunteers are often on hand to demonstrate riding and ground-training techniques. While the ranch buildings are open to visit every day, this monthly open house is the best opportunity to get up close and personal with the park’s most lovable employees, the Morgan Horses!
Journey of the Whales
Join a Ranger to learn about gray whales as they migrate past Point Reyes. Learn about their habits and adaptations, and hope for a whale sighting from the Observation Deck. Program lasts 15-20 minutes. Come prepared for the possibility of windy, cold and damp weather. Meet at the Lighthouse Observation Deck. Typically offered January through March.
Exploring Elephant Seals
Elephant seal colonies are a cacophony of sounds, smells and activity; join a ranger for a short program at Drakes Beach that will help you make sense of all that racket! This 15 to 20 minute program will explore the extreme lives of the northern elephant seals who haul out on Point Reyes' beaches each winter, and provide ample opportunities for seal viewing. Come prepared for the possibility of windy, cold and damp weather. Meet at the Kenneth C. Patrick Visitor Center. Typically offered January through March.
Drakes Beach Discovery Hike
Join a ranger on a one-hour guided walk along Drakes Beach. While program content can vary by ranger, topics may include natural and human history, wildlife, or geology—you never know what secrets and surprises Drakes Beach can reveal on any given day! Offered from May through November.
Rangers are often able to accommodate special program requests for groups visiting the park, depending on staffing availability. Please call 415-464-5100 or contact us for more information; advanced notice is appreciated and increases the likelihood rangers will be able to accommodate your request.
Last updated: March 3, 2023