What We Do

The Point Lobos Foundation funds programs designed to enhance the public's awareness and enjoyment of Point Lobos, assists California State Parks in preserving Point Lobos and helps to provide long-term vision for the Reserve and its surrounding areas.


The Point Lobos Docent Corps is a group of approximately 180 highly trained volunteers who augment the existing California State Parks staff. To become docents, volunteers complete a rigorous, six-month training course, and participate in continued monthly education. Some docents have been with this program since its inception in 1981, and have amassed an invaluable wealth of knowledge of Point Lobos in their years of service.

Docents lead subject-specific nature walks for visitors including school groups and people who are mobility-impaired, set up spotting scopes to afford visitors a better view of the marine mammals and birds, and permanently staff the information station and the historic Whalers Cabin Museum. Docents are the backbone of the wonderful interpretive and educational programs found within Point Lobos, acting not only as volunteers but also as visionaries to constantly improve and expand on the educational opportunities offered to visitors. In 2013, docents volunteered more than 23,756 hours (equivalent to more than 11 full-time employees) at Point Lobos.

The Foundation funds the Point Lobos Docent Corps in its entirety, providing;

  • one full-time Docent Coordinator, a State Parks employee who is funded by the Point Lobos Foundation,
  • specialized interpretive equipment including spotting scopes and advanced technology for people who are mobility-impaired, and
  • team-building tools like an interactive web site, training resources and the beloved green jackets.


  • publishes free, multilingual, visitor brochures encompassing all facets of the Reserve,
  • funds school outreach program, and
  • provides a library for historical and field research.



  • provides maintenance and facility improvements for the Whalers Cabin and Whaling Station Museum,
  • maintains interpretive collections,
  • funds continuous trail maintenance and improvements, and
  • funds the eradication of invasive plants on an annual basis.

During part of 2009 and 2010, a period of extraordinary California State Parks budget shortfalls, the PLF provided salaries to several park aides, including those who staff the entrance kiosk and the maintenance crew.