Point Reyes National Seashore

Point Reyes National Seashore

Park Regulations & Safety

Horse Riding

Safety and Etiquette
Stinging nettle is a common plant at Point Reyes National Seashore. Horses can react strongly if they are stung by this plant's small needle-like hairs. In extreme cases, horses have died after extensive exposure to this plant. Some trails may be overgrown at certain times of the year with nettle. Both horse and rider should avoid this plant. The best way to do this is to stay on the trail.

Horse riding etiquette and rules for safety at Point Reyes National Seashore are much the same as at other parks:

  • To help control the spread of non-native plants, please feed horses weed-free feed for a few days before visiting the park. Please do not shovel manure out of horse trailers in parking lots or elsewhere within the National Seashore. For more information on this issue, read Invasive Plant Species in Horse Manure (230 KB PDF).
  • Carry plenty of water!
  • Always take a trail map with you. Free maps are available at visitor centers. Study the map carefully before beginning your trip so that you will know the names and locations of trails. In the event of an accident, this will assist rangers in locating the injured party quicker.
  • It is best not to ride alone. In case of an accident, send someone to the nearest visitor center or ranger station or call 911. Give a good description of your location and the nature of injury to both horse and rider.
  • Allow plenty of time for your ride. Trails over Inverness Ridge can be steep and physically stressful for your horse. Plan adequate rest stops.
  • Please share the trail. Horses have the right of way: hikers yield to horses and are asked to stand on the downhill side of slopes, and bicyclists yield to both horses and hikers.
  • Remain alert. Remember that interactions can occur with little warning on curves and hills. Slow your horse to a walk when encountering other trail users.
  • To control erosion and lessen impact, short-cutting trails or switchbacks is prohibited.
  • Do not leave pack animals unattended for extended periods of time in campground areas, unless you are camping at the site and have obtained a permit for overnight use.
  • Horses may only be tied to hitching rails, not to trees, faucets, picnic tables, etc.

Areas Closed to Horses and Pack Animals

On Saturdays, Sundays and holidays, the following trails are closed to horses and pack animals:

  • Bear Valley Trail between the Mt. Wittenberg Trail and Glen Trail junctions
  • Meadow Trail and Old Pine Trail

Horses and pack animals are not allowed in the following areas at any time:

  • Drakes Beach
  • Self-guided interpretive trails such as the Earthquake Trail, the Woodpecker Trail, or Kule Loklo
  • Dunes and vegetated areas on beaches.
  • Off trail in campgrounds, picnic areas or vicinity.

The following areas have seasonal closures:

  • Dunes and areas above the high tide line on the Great Beach are closed June 15 - September 15 to protect the nests of the endangered snowy plovers.
  • Elephant seals occur on the southern portion of South Beach during winter and spring seasons. This area is closed when seals are present. The Marine Mammal Protection Act requires that you stay at least 90 meters (100 yards) away from any marine mammal you encounter.

Llamas are prohibited from all areas that are inhabited by tule elk. Map

Trail conditions vary throughout the year. Check with the Bear Valley Visitor Center at (415) 464-5100 before your ride for current trail information and special closures.

Camping with Horses and Pack Animals
Camping is by permit only in three established campgrounds. Permits must be obtained at the Bear Valley Visitor Center before starting your trip. Reservations are recommended and can be made in person at the Bear Valley Visitor Center. Phone reservations are taken from 9am-2pm on Mondays through Fridays at 415-663-8054.

The maximum number of horses or pack animals permitted overnight at Sky, Coast and Wildcat Campgrounds is six. Horses are not permitted over-night at Glen Camp. Llamas are not permitted at Coast Campground.

Pack animals and horses must be tied to hitching rails. Do not hitch animals to water supply faucets or picnic tables.

Grazing in the wilderness areas is prohibited. All feed for the animals must be packed in with you. In order to control the spread of non-native plants, please bring in only weed-free feed.

There is usually potable water available at each of the camps from faucets. Sky and Wildcat Campgrounds also have a water trough for horses and pack animals.

Special Use Permits are required for commercial horseback riding or pack trains into the backcountry. Call 415-464-5111 for more information.

Overnight camping is also available at Stewart's Horse Camp. This is a privately managed camp located on Highway 1, 0.4 kilometer (1/4 mile) north of Five Brooks Trailhead. 415-663-1362

Popular Trail Rides
From Bear Valley

  • Arch Rock. Take Bear Valley Trail. This is the most direct and level route to the ocean from this trailhead. Bear Valley Trail is not open to horses on weekends and holidays beyond the Mt. Wittenburg trail junction. Easy. 13.1 kilometers / 8.2 miles.
  • Mt. Wittenberg. Take Horse Trail to Z Ranch Trail to Mt. Wittenberg Trail to Bear Valley Trail to trailhead. Horse Trail begins behind the pastures used by the Morgan Horse Ranch, between the ranch and Kule Loklo. Please do not take horses into the Kule Loklo village. Moderate. 8.8 kilometers / 5.5 miles.
  • Inverness Ridge. Take Bear Valley Trail to Wittenberg Trail to Sky Trail to Coast Trail to Bear Valley Trail to trailhead. Strenuous. 17.3 kilometers / 10.8 miles.
  • Coastal Ride. Take Bear Valley Trail to Mt. Wittenberg Trail to Sky Trail to Woodward Valley Trail to Coast Trail to Fire Lane Trail to Sky Trail to Horse Trail to trailhead. Access to beach at Coast Camp. Strenuous. 20.3 kilometers / 12.7 miles.

From Five Brooks Trailhead

  • San Andreas Fault. Rift Zone Trail to Bear Valley and back. Mostly flat trail with cattle gates; can be extremely muddy during rainy season. Easy. 13.8 kilometers / 8.6 miles.
  • Wildcat Beach. Stewart Trail to Wildcat Camp and back. Access to beach at the camp. Return loops can be quite a variety of combinations. Moderate to Strenuous. 21.4 kilometers / 13.4 miles.
  • Lakes Tour. Olema Valley Trail to Bolema Trail to Lake Ranch Trail to Coast Trail to Wildcat Camp/Beach to Stewart Trail to Greenpicker Trail to Stewart Trail to trailhead. Strenuous. 22.6 kilometers / 14.1 miles.

 

Park Regulations

Park regulations are established to protect Point Reyes National Seashore's natural and cultural resources, and to provide for visitor safety. Your cooperation and assistance will ensure that we may all enjoy these resources for generations to come. The following is a summary of park regulations. A comprehensive list is available in Title 36 Code of Federal Regulations (36 CFR) and the Superintendent's Compendium. Please contact the appropriate office for additional information.

Aircraft

Remote controlled, motorized aircraft are prohibited due to potential disturbance to visitors and wildlife. Hang gliders require special use permit to operate in the park. Contact the Special Park Uses office at 415-464-5111 for information about hang gliding at Point Reyes.

Bicycles

Bicycles must remain on paved roads or on trails designated by signs for their use. Bicyclists may not exceed 25 km/hr (15 mph) on trails, and must yield to horses and pedestrians. Visit our Bicycle Riding page for more information.

Boats

Non-motorized vessels may be used on freshwater lakes within the Seashore. They are also permitted at Abbott's Lagoon, Limantour Estero and Drakes Esteros, except that Limantour and Drake's Esteros are closed to all boat traffic from March 1 through June 30 each year to protect breeding wildlife. Visit our Kayaking page for more information. Personal water craft are prohibited in Tomales Bay. Map of PWC closure

Camping

Camping is allowed by permit ONLY in designated backcountry campgrounds and on the western Tomales Bay beaches that are not closed for wildlife protection. Contact the camping desk at 415-663-8054 or visit our Backcountry Camping page for more information.

Collecting

All objects (plants, animals, or parts of them such as flowers or antlers, historic artifacts, minerals, etc.) within the National Seashore are protected and may not be collected. However, certain products are available for personal (non-commercial) use only in limited quantities. These are:

  • Edible berries - 1 liter (1 quart) per person per day
  • Edible mushrooms - 8 liters (2 gallons) plus 1 mushroom per adult per day
  • Unoccupied seashells, gathered by hand
  • Daffodil flowers from the abandoned nursery site near the Laguna Trailhead - six (6) flowers per person per day

Research specimens may only be taken with a special use permit. Contact the Division of Natural Resources at 415-464-5202 for more information or visit our Obtaining Scientific Research & Collecting Permits for Bay Area National Parks page.

Commercial activities

Most commercial activities are prohibited. Those which are permitted require a permit obtained in advance. Check with the park special uses office at 415-464-5111 for information on conducting commercial activities within the park.

Fires

Fires are allowed on beaches but are subject to restrictions. A permit is required and is available at the visitor centers or from field rangers. Permits are issued free of charge on a same day basis (the same-day you plan to have a fire). During periods of high fire danger, all open fires may be prohibited. Check with a visitor center for fire closures on the day you obtain your permit. For more information about fire regulations, visit our Beach Fires page or call the Bear Valley Visitor Center at 415-464-5100 x2 x5.

Fishing

Fishing is closely regulated in the park and is subject to California State Fish and Game regulations. It is the individual's responsibility to be familiar with the state laws pertaining to the area they intend to fish, and with the species and limits of fish they take. A valid state fishing license is required. Fishing is allowed on park beaches and freshwater lakes and ponds. Fishing is prohibited in Lagunitas Creek and all its tributaries including Olema and Bear Valley Creeks, in all inland freshwater streams in the park, in Limantour Estero, and in the Point Reyes Headlands Marine Conservation Area.

Guns

Guns and firearms of all types are prohibited within the park. See "Weapons" section. Hunting within the National Seashore is prohibited. Map of NPS & State Park lands closed to hunting

Horses and pack animals

Horses are permitted on all open trails in the park. The Bear Valley Trail (between the Mt. Wittenberg Trail and the Glen Trail junctions), the Meadow Trail, and the Old Pine Trail are closed to horses on weekends and holidays. Horses are prohibited at Kule Loklo, Drake's Beach, Earthquake Trail, Woodpecker Trail, and on roadways. Map of trails closed to horses. Llamas are prohibited from Tomales Point Tule Elk Reserve and the Limantour area from Home Bay to the Coast Trail/Woodward Valley Trail Junction from the beach up to Inverness Ridge. Map of trails closed to llamas. Read the Superintendent's Compendium or contact the visitor centers for further information.

Metal detectors

Metal detecting and detectors are prohibited in the park to protect cultural and historic resources. Metal detectors may be transported through the park if they are cased and broken down so as to prevent their use.

Permits

The following is a list of activities that require a permit. Not all activities requiring a permit are listed. Contact the park's Special Park Uses office (415-464-5111) for further information or refer to listed offices.

  • Commercial filming or photography--contact the Special Park Uses office at 415-464-5111.
  • Research specimens collection--contact the Division of Natural Resources at 415-464-5202.
  • Camping--contact the Camping reservations desk at 415-663-8054.
  • Fires--check with visitor centers or field ranger for permits and restrictions.
  • Special Events including but not limited to weddings, fund-raisers, sporting events, group events larger than 100 persons--contact the Special Park Uses office at 415-464-5111.

Pets

All pets must be restrained at all times while in the Seashore on a leash no longer than six feet long. Pets may not be tied to an object and left unattended, or be allowed to make unreasonable noise. Pets are not permitted in public buildings, on most trails, or in campgrounds. Pets are permitted on the Kehoe Trail to Kehoe Beach, and on the Bolinas Ridge, Randall, Jewell, and McCurdy Trails. Please observe all signs indicating pet restrictions. Check out the Pet Regulations page or contact a Visitor Center for additional information on where pets are permitted.

Skateboarding, in-line skates and similar devices

These activities are prohibited within the park.

Viewing wildlife

Wildlife may not be viewed with an artificial light at night, nor approached so that animal behavior is altered.

Weapons

Weapons, including firearms, B-B guns, slingshots, bows and arrows, or any object capable of discharging a projectile, as well as weapons prohibited by the state, are prohibited and must be secured to prevent their use. Hunting within the National Seashore is prohibited. Map of NPS & State Park lands closed to hunting

 

Bicycle Riding

Point Reyes National Seashore provides a variety of off-road biking opportunities traversing diverse habitats and terrains. You can explore trails through evergreen forests, coastal scrub, or along estuaries and beach bluffs.

Visitor Centers offer a free map of the park's trails, indicating which trails are designated for bike travel. These maps are also available to download from our Maps page. Point Reyes permits biking only outside of wilderness areas along emergency access/dirt fire roads, paved roads and a few single-track trails.

Bicycles may be rented in Point Reyes Station.

Horseback riders have right-of-way on the trails with hikers coming second. Bicyclists must yield to both of these trail user groups. Be aware that many horses are easily spooked when approached from behind. Reduce your speed when approaching horses or hikers. When approaching from behind, announce your presence. Stop on the downhill side of the trail while horses pass. The speed limit on all trails, even when headed downhill, is 15 mph. Be courteous. If trails are dry and dusty, slow down even more so as not to leave hikers in a cloud of dust.

The maximum number of bicyclists in any one group is 10. Larger groups of cyclists will have to divide into groups no larger than 10. This size restriction is necessary for the safety of cyclists using public roadways and authorized trails within the Park. These roadways and trails are narrow and winding and will not safely accommodate large numbers of bicyclists.

Caution
Loose dirt and gravel cover many of the trails. This slick surface can be difficult to maneuver in and can make for easy slide outs. The loose dirt can also hide potholes. These technical riding surfaces challenge even the most experienced bikers. We recommend always wearing a helmet, a long-sleeved shirt and long pants.

Carry plenty of water!

Beach Fires

Beach Fire Rules and Regulations
If you intend to build a wood fire within the park during your stay, you must read and understand the following.

Permits: Permits are now required for any wood fire ignited within the National Seashore. Permits are available at visitor centers, the dispatch office, and from field rangers. Permits may only be obtained on the day you plan on having a fire. The permit is free. Permits are not available or valid during high, very high or extreme fire danger. For current fire information, please call 415-464-5100 x2 x1.

Wood fires & locations: Wood fires are allowed only on beaches (below the high tide line, if possible), 9 meters (30 feet) or more from vegetation and other flammable material - nowhere else.

Wood fire fuel: Reasonable amounts of driftwood may be gathered from beaches. Driftwood should be dry and clean (i.e., no wood coated with creosote or other chemicals, no wood embedded with nails or other metal objects), and shouldn't be much larger or longer than your arm.
 
Sudden Oak Death: Wood brought from outside of the park must be pine or almond. Do not bring oak, fir, redwood, madrone, or tanoak unless they are certified to be free of the plant pathogen Phytophthora ramorum which causes Sudden Oak Death. Visit the California Oak Mortality Task Force's website for the most up-to-date list of plant species that are susceptible to Sudden Oak Death infestation. To limit the spread of Phytophthora ramorum, please do not transport wood from these species.

Fire size: The fire may not be more than 0.9 meters (36 inches) in diameter.

Proper dousing: Before leaving your beach fire, put it out completely with water. Douse the fire with water, stir the coals, douse with water again. Repeat until the coals do not emit any heat. Do not cover the coals with sand as it will only insulate the heat and be an unseen danger to wildlife and barefoot visitors.

Extinguishing time: Fires must be extinguished by 12 midnight.

Charcoal fires: Charcoal fires are allowed in the Bear Valley and Drakes Beach picnic areas and the backcountry campgrounds in the grills provided. Visitors may also have charcoal fires in their own self-contained barbecue grills. Completely extinguish the briquettes and pack out the ash and charcoal. Visitors planning to cook food over a beach fire or barbecue should come prepared with an alternative means (i.e., self-contained gas stove) of cooking in the event of high, very high or extreme fire danger.

 

Alcohol Policy

The consumption and possession of alcoholic beverages by persons 21 years or older is permitted within Point Reyes National Seashore. However, all public use areas within the park are closed to the possession of receptacles with a capacity of five fluid gallons or more which contain an alcoholic beverage. The behavior induced by the consumption of excessive amounts of alcoholic beverages may adversely affect the park experience of other visitors. Parties with alcohol in large containers (i.e., kegs) have consistently caused problems in the past including rowdy behavior and vandalism.
 

Mountain Lions

Generally, mountain lions are calm, quiet and elusive. They are most commonly found in areas with plentiful prey and adequate cover. Such conditions exist within Point Reyes National Seashore. Mountain lions are an important part of the park ecosystem, helping to keep deer and other prey populations in check. Although lion attacks are rare, they are possible, as is injury from any wild animal. Even so, the potential for being killed or injured by a mountain lion is quite low compared to many other natural hazards. There is a far greater risk, for example, of being killed in an automobile accident with a deer than of being attacked by a mountain lion.

We offer the following recommendations to increase your safety:

Do not hike alone. Hike in groups, with adults supervising children.

Keep children close to you. Keep children within your sight at all times.

If you see a mountain lion:

  • Stay calm. Hold your ground or back away slowly. Face the lion and stand upright.
  • Do not approach a lion. Never approach a mountain lion especially one that is feeding or with kittens. Most mountain lions will try to avoid a confrontation. Give them a way to escape.
  • Do not run from a lion. Running may stimulate a mountain lion's instinct to chase. Instead, stand and face the animal. Make eye contact. If you have small children with you, pick them up if possible so they don't panic and run. Although it may be awkward, pick them up without bending over or turning away from the mountain lion.
  • Do not crouch down or bend over. Biologists surmise mountain lions don’t recognize standing humans as prey. On the other hand, a person squatting or bending over looks a lot like a four-legged prey animal. If you're in mountain lion habitat, avoid squatting, crouching or bending over, even when picking up children.

If the mountain lion moves in your direction or acts aggressively:

  • Do all you can to appear intimidating.
    • Attempt to appear larger by raising your arms and opening your jacket if you are wearing one. Wave your arms slowly and speak firmly in a loud voice.
    • If looking bigger doesn't scare the mountain lion off, start throwing stones, branches, or whatever you can reach in its direction without crouching or turning your back. Don’t throw things at it just yet. There is no need to unnecessarily injure the mountain lion. With that said, your safety is of the utmost importance and the National Park Service won’t necessarily prosecute you for harassment of wildlife if something you throw at an aggressive mountain lion does make contact. During the initial stages of a mountain lion encounter, the idea is to convince the mountain lion that you are not prey and that you may be a danger to it.

If the mountain lion continues to move in your direction:

  • Start throwing things AT it. Again, your safety is more important than the mountain lion’s.

If the mountain lion attacks you:

  • Fight back! A hiker in Southern California used a rock to fend off a mountain lion that was attacking his son. Others have fought back successfully with sticks, caps, jackets, garden tools, and their bare hands. Since a mountain lion usually tries to bite the head or neck, try to remain standing and face the attacking animal.

IMMEDIATELY REPORT ALL SIGHTINGS, ENCOUNTERS OR ATTACKS
If you are involved in a face-to-face encounter with, or an attack by, a mountain lion, contact a ranger at one of the park’s visitor centers as soon as possible or call 415-464-5170. The threat to public safety will be assessed and appropriate action will be taken.

 

Pets

Dogs are wonderful animals that give comfort and companionship. However, a national park is not the best place for them. Dogs chase, scare and can transmit diseases to wild animals such as nesting birds or marine mammals. Dogs leave behind a "predator" scent typical of all wild canines like wolves and coyotes. This scent can linger in the area for long periods of time and can disrupt or alter the behavior of the native animals this park has been set aside to protect.

If you bring a dog to the park, please observe the following regulations:

  • Dogs must be on a leash at all times; the leash must be no longer than 6 feet.
  • All trails within the park are closed to dogs - with the exception of Kehoe Beach trail and designated trails in the neighboring Golden Gate National Recreation Area.
  • Dogs are allowed on the following beaches:
    • Kehoe Beach - north of the Kehoe Beach trail
    • Limantour Beach - southeast of the parking lot to the beach adjacent to Coast Camp
    • Point Reyes/Great Beach - from the North Beach parking lot to the south
    • Palomarin Beach - no longer open to pets
  • Due to threatened snowy plover habitat, dogs are not allowed on the beach south of the trail at Kehoe Beach or on the beach to the north of the North Beach parking lot.
  • During the elephant seal pupping and mating season (December through April), dogs and humans are not allowed on the beach south of the South Beach parking lot.
  • Dogs are allowed in the Bear Valley Visitor Center parking lot and picnic area.
  • Pets are not permitted in public buildings, on public transportation vehicles, or in locations designated as a swimming beach, or within any structure or area closed to the possession of pets by the superintendent. This prohibition does not apply to guide dogs accompanying visually impaired persons or hearing ear dogs accompanying hearing-impaired persons.
  • Leaving a pet unattended and tied to an object is prohibited.

Pet owners not adhering to regulations will be cited.

Stop by a visitor center to pick up a free flyer on dog regulations for the Seashore and other parks in the area.

Your Safety

Beaches
The National Seashore offers a diversity of beaches to explore. However, if you plan to spend any time near the shoreline stay aware of the movement of the tides. Consult a tide book before going tidepooling. Always keep an eye on the surf and watch for occasional large waves, called sneaker waves, along Pacific Ocean beaches. Also remember, since fire permits are issued for beach fires, hot coals may exist below the surface if fires have not been extinguished properly. Wearing shoes on beaches is recommended.

Cliffs and Rockfalls
Many of the cliffs and bluffs found within Point Reyes National Seashore are composed of friable rocks and are quite unstable. Rockfalls and slumps occur regularly, so visitors should stay several meters away from the edge of clifftops and the base of the cliffs. Because of the crumbly nature of the rocks, rock climbing within Point Reyes National Seashore is discouraged.

Giardia
Beware of giardiasis as the cause of water-borne outbreaks of diarrhea. Associated symptoms include chronic diarrhea, abdominal cramps, bloating, fatigue and loss of weight. Giardia are carried by humans and some domestic and wild animals. They get into surface water (lakes, streams and rivers) and contaminate water supplies. Carry water from public supplies in canteens or bulk containers.

Note:
Water treatment disinfecting chemicals are not considered as reliable as heat in killing giardia. Use a Giardia-rated filter in place of chemicals or heat disinfecting. Backcountry surface water should be boiled for one minute. The evening meal is an ideal time to boil water for drinking and brushing teeth for the next day's use. (Interim Guidelines National Park Service Washington, D.C. 20240)

Check in with the Bear Valley Visitor Center for an up to date report on the current water conditions in campgrounds. Call 415-464-5100 x2 x5 seven days a week (except December 25th) between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm.

Poison Oak and Stinging Nettle
Staying on trails will also help you avoid two plants which can cause annoying skin irritations. Poison oak has three smooth, shiny leaflets and is usually bright green, but often has a red coloration in new shoots and in the dry season. Thoroughly wash any skin that may have come in contact with the plant with cool water and grease-cutting dish soap. Be sure to also wash all clothing before wearing again. Stinging nettle is a tall weedy plant with needle-like projections that inject a chemical into your skin, creating a burning sensation for up to 24 hours. If you are unsure what either of these plants looks like, stop at a visitor center before starting your hike.

Ticks
Ticks that carry Lyme disease are known to occur in this area. Stay on trails and check your clothing frequently. The quicker ticks are removed, the less the chance of transmittal of the organism that causes illness. Wearing light-colored, long pants helps you spot them; tuck your pant legs inside your socks to keep them from crawling up your legs. Always check your body completely at the end of your hike. For more information on ticks, check out the Center for Disease Control's Tick Tips.  

 

Wildlife
Wildlife can be unpredictable and dangerous. But visitors to Point Reyes National Seashore need not worry much about being harmed by wildlife if they use a bit of common sense.

Always maintain a safe distance of at least 90 meters (300 feet) from large animals such as elk and mountain lions, and at least 23 meters (75 feet) from other wildlife. It is illegal to be within 30 meters (100 feet) of marine mammals. Never position yourself between a bull elk and its harem, a mountain lion and its prey, or an adult and its offspring. Females with young can be especially defensive.

Use binoculars, spotting scopes or long lenses for close views and photographs. Use an animal’s behavior as a guide to your actions, and limit the time you spend with wildlife. If an animal alters its behavior due to your presence, you are too close. Allow other visitors a chance to enjoy wildlife. If your actions cause an animal to flee, you have deprived other visitors of a viewing opportunity.

It is illegal to feed wildlife, including squirrels and birds. Feeding wild animals makes them dependent on people, and these animals sometimes end up biting the hands of people who try to feed them. Diseases and/or parasites may also be transmitted from animals to humans.

Do not harass wildlife. Harassment is any human action that causes unusual behavior, or a change of behavior, in an animal. Repeated encounters with people can have negative, long-term impacts on wildlife, including increased levels of stress and the avoidance of essential feeding areas.

Mountain Lions
Mountain lions (also called cougars) live in the park and your paths may cross. Sighting a mountain lion is usually considered a rare treat. Generally, there is no need to fear lions. Ironically, the wild animal that causes more human deaths per year than any other is not the mountain lion, but its primary prey -- deer. Your Safety in Mountain Lion Habitat and park Visitor Centers have information on how to behave in lion habitat and what to do if you should see one in the backcountry. Please report all mountain lion sightings to a ranger at a VisitorCenter.

Elk
Bull elk behave aggressively during their rutting season. Stay on designated trails, where the elk are accustomed to encountering people. If you encounter an elk on the trail, stop and evaluate the situation. Do not approach the elk. Wait for it to proceed on its way. Or you can return to the trailhead. But, as with any potentially dangerous animal, don’t completely turn your back on the elk. Keep an eye on it and remain aware of what it is doing.

Deer
Point Reyes has an abundance of deer which are often found feeding on the shoulders of roadways. Automobile collisions with deer occur on an almost daily basis. Most of the roads of Point Reyes are windy and narrow, so slow down, observe speed limits and allow your passengers to enjoy the scenery.