Volunteers are the heartbeat of the U.S. Forest Service.  Volunteer service in the Forest Service was formalized in the Volunteers in the National Forest Act of 1972.  The national forests, grasslands, and prairies are there for you to enjoy because many people have served over numerous years to preserve, protect and improve them.  Now you can give something back by volunteering.

What captures your interest?  The diversity of projects and positions available offers each person a chance to participate in an activity that meets their individual or group interests.  Trail work, bird surveys, conservation education, information receptionist, and wilderness restoration projects are a few examples of what may be available.


Why Volunteer?

Working with the Forest Service and fellow volunteers is an opportunity to see what our National Forests have to offer in a way beneficial to both yourself and the forest.  The commitment you make is up to you.

  • It can give you the opportunity to pursue a special interest, such as bird watching or hiking.
  • Develop or diversify your job experience and career choices.
  • Earn credit towards college with volunteer internships.
  • If you are retired or have summers free, live on a national forest while you work as a volunteer.
  • Perform vigorous but satisfying physical labor outdoors.
  • Meet people and form new friendships, or gain self-satisfaction in providing community service.
  • Spending time in the outdoors, enjoying the company of your fellow volunteers and visitors, can give you a new perspective on other facets of your life.

Volunteering in the National Forest can offer valuable experience and life long memories.  Give it a try!


Local Volunteer Opportunities

Below you will find information on Local Volunteer Opportunities in the Lake Tahoe Basin.  You may call the volunteer coordinators at the telephone numbers listed below or contact us for additional information.


Be a Forest Service Volunteer

The "Trees and Trails" program offers many opportunities to help your National Forests.  Volunteers are needed not only in the backcountry but throughout the Recreation program and beyond.  Conservation Education classes, visitor information, historic preservation, tour guides, trails work, gardening, winter programs for adults and children, are but a few of the possibilities.

For more information, contact Joy Barney (530) 543-2685


Desolation Wilderness Volunteers

From Trailhead Naturalists and Ranger Patrols to Wilderness Information or Resource Monitoring, volunteers help with a variety of activities to help manage Desolation Wilderness.  Each spring, special workshops are held to recruit and train volunteers for the upcoming summer season.

For information about future volunteer opportunities, visit www.desowv.org


Noxious Weed Removal Crew:

Volunteers are needed to help identify and manually remove invasive plant species that are threatening the plant communities of the Tahoe Basin!  Enjoy the day outside in the forest and help remove these noxious weed plants by hand!

For more information, contact Rena Escobedo at (530) 543-2733.


OHV Volunteers

Multiple opportunities exist with various volunteer groups to work on OHV routes with the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit.  The Rubicon Trail Foundation and the Friends of the Rubicon work to maintain the McKinney/Rubicon Trail to preserve access and protect resources.  The North Tahoe Trail Dusters work in the North Lake Tahoe area and specifically volunteer on Bucks Lake Road and the Middle Fork of Blackwood Canyon Road. The Lake Tahoe Hi-Lo's work in the South Lake Tahoe area and specifically in the Twin Peaks area.

For more information about these clubs visit the following websites:


Tallac Historic Site

Baldwin Museum Docent
Are you interested in meeting and greeting people and making new friends?  Do you like Lake Tahoe history and the idea of sharing it with others?  Do you like being part of the community and giving something back?  Then you may enjoy being a docent at the Tallac Historic Site.

Did you know that gardening is the Number 1 activity for stress relief?  The Tallac Historic site, next to Camp Richardson Resort, has both native and non-native historic gardens?  The Tallac Historic Site volunteer program is the only way of maintaining the Site's grounds and gardens?  You can help the Tahoe Heritage Foundation and U.S. Forest Service plant and maintain these gardens.

Historic Site volunteers
Volunteers are needed to staff the historic buildings, provide interpretive tours, help with special costumed events, and help with maintenance and restoration projects.

For more information,  visit the Tallac Site Volunteer Information web page, or contact the Tahoe Heritage Foundation, Mikan Gosuico at (530) 544-7383.


Trail Crew Volunteers:

If you are looking for a fun, challenging and rewarding activity that gives you the chance to work with some wonderful people while surrounded by incredible scenery, you've come to the right place! The Tahoe Rim Trail Association and the Pacific Crest Trail Association, along with other hiking and equestrian groups, assists the U.S. Forest Service, State Parks, and other agencies with the care of the many hiking trails in the Lake Tahoe Basin.

From removing blow-downs, moving rocks, repairing wash-outs to cutting back chaparral, trail crews do it all.

For more information, visit the following websites:



National Volunteer Opportunities

[Logo]:  Link to Passport in Time, Forest ServicePassport in Time (PIT) is a volunteer program of the U.S. Forest Service.  PIT provides opportunities for the public to work with professional archaeologists and historians on national forests and grasslands across the country.

[Logo]: Link to USA Freedom Corps. Make a difference. Volunteer.

United We Serve
"United We Serve" is a nationwide service initiative that will help meet growing social needs resulting from the economic downturn.  With the knowledge that ordinary people can achieve extraordinary things when given the proper tools, President Obama is asking us to come together to help lay a new foundation for growth.  This initiative aims to both expand the impact of existing organizations by engaging new volunteers in their work and encourage volunteers to develop their own "do-it-yourself" projects.  United We Serve is an initial 81 days of service but will grow into a sustained, collaborative and focused effort to promote service as a way of life for all Americans.


Tallac Historic Site Volunteer Information

Tallac Site Volunteer Flyer

Are you interested in becoming a volunteer at the Tallac Historic Site.  There are many ways to help.  Some volunteers take part in the continued preservation, restoration, and maintenance of structures, grounds, artifacts and machinery.  Others prefer providing tours. Still others assist in a variety of museum related activities including staffing or behind the scenes projects.  Master and amateur gardeners love the heritage and demonstration gardens.  There is really something for everyone at any level of skill or nterest.