Rising out of the chaparral-covered Gabilan Mountains, east of central California's Salinas Valley, are the spectacular remains of an ancient volcano. Massive monoliths, spires, sheer-walled canyons and talus passages define millions of years of erosion, faulting and tectonic plate movement. Within the monument's boundaries lie 24,000 acres of diverse wildlands.
The rock formations of Pinnacles National Monument divide the park into East and West Districts
Who do we serve ?Our education programsfor over two hundred ofCalifornias public andindependent schools haveintroduced thousands ofstudents to environmentsas diverse as the…
Pygmy Forest of Sonoma Catalina Island Giant Forest of Sequoia Sonoran Desert Colorado River
We work with eachschool every stepof the way toidentify theiroutdoor educationgoals and thentailor a program tomeet those specificneeds.
Trail Group sizes of 9 to 14 students Always with one NAL instructor and one adult from your school
Naturalists at Largeprovides a complete outdoor curriculumfor primary through high school level students. We can accommodate trips for 15 students to over 200.
Naturalists at Large draws it’s instructorsfrom all over the United States. These aremen and women with 4-year universitydegrees who have proven experienceworking with youth in the outdoors and inthe classroom.
With their high comfort and experience inthe outdoors, their passion for teaching,and a commitment to safety first, we havethe foundation for a fantastic experiencefor you and your students.
All of our instructors are CPR and WildernessFirst Aid Certified. 80 % of them holdadvanced certifications such as WildernessEmergency Medical Training, Wilderness FirstResponders and Wilderness Advanced FirstAid.RESPONSE TIMES: for Emergency Services1st Response (Park Service EMT): dependingon area 5-30 minutes.Ambulance: 45 minutes out of HollisterMedivac Helicopter: 15 minutesLaw Enforcement: Minutes
Oddly shaped spires andcrags tower above chaparral- clad hills make for a unique outdoor setting
Located along the San Andreas Rift Zone4 distinct biologicalcommunitiesHome to the CaliforniaCondorContains miles ofmaintained hiking trailsAccess to a wide rangeof rock climbing sitesAnd caves to explore
Near the east entrance tothe park you will stay at a park campground
Pinnacles CampgroundA National Park Service operated campground with tent sites,R.V. sites and group camping sites. Modern facilities include aconvenience store, swimming pool and hot showers.
and call it homeWe use custom made 4-person tents, which are typically used toshelter two students and their gear (each faculty get their own tent).
And food preparation are skills to be learned…
Meals are wholesome affairs providing the nutrition needed for activeThere’s a variety of menu participantsoptions from which to choose
Allergies and Special Food NeedsProgram meals offer vegetarian foodoptions.For those with specific needs due toallergies or personal reasons, we suggestdiscussion with your faculty.Naturalists at Large can help guide thosewith special diets to supplement their mealsin ways which everyone can most easilymanage.
A focus of most allNaturalists at Largeprogramming is theinteraction of theindividual with thegroup. The needs ofboth must be metthrough thedevelopment ofcooperation,leadership andproblem solving skills.
The facilitation ofactivities, with theemphasis on ourinteraction with theenvironment andeach other,promotes awarenessof each individual’srole in making thegroup experience apositive one.
A keycomponent tomost everyPinnaclesprogram willbe…
Team building through rock climbingis a great way to create groupcohesion, build trust, learn aboutproblem solving, and improve self-esteem. Rock climbing is a teamsport. Trust and reliance on ones’partner promotes communication,leadership, and strategic planning. Not to mention it is fun!
All levels of ability areaccommodated on our climbing program
Climbing is a dancethat engages bodyand mind. Learn howto balance, how tofocus--one tiny holdat a time.
And after a half day of climbingit’s time for some lunch and…
Study Chaparral Community,Oak Woodland and GrasslandAdaptations of Plants and AnimalsVolcanic GeologyEnvironmental Influences on specificEcosystemsCondor Habitat and Preservation
Miles ofhikingtrails canlead you tothe highpeaks…
A Typical Day7:30 Breakfast9:00 Groups A and B do journal activities,geology hike, group initiatives. Groups C and Drock climb12:00 Lunch by groups1:00 Groups C and D do journal activities,geology hike, group initiatives. Groups A and Brock climb4:30 Return to camp for large group games6:00 Dinner7:30 Evening Program:Night walk and star study9:00 Students released to faculty
Ask about… Allergies, Medications, and Special Dietary Needs
Equipment RemindersFollow your equipment list.Pack together. Adult and student can doublecheck the contents of the gear bag.All clothing should fit in a medium size duffle.A day pack is essential to move about the programwith water, some food, extra layers of clothing,and personal incidentals.Utensil Kit that may be reused for each meal anda cup that can handle hot & cold liquids.
Rain gear is a must. (water-proof shell) RainPonchos are fine.Comfortable closed toed shoes are required.Light weight hikers or tennis shoes with a fewpairs of good outdoor socks (non-cotton).Two good water bottles (quart or liter size).The proper sleeping bag (check your equipmentlist for specifics).A ground pad for underneath you and yoursleeping bag.
Plastic bag protection. A half dozen, 1 or 2gallon storage ziplocks are good for protectingclothing in a gear bag from moisture. Along witha couple hefty 15 to 30 gallon bags to line yourgear bag and sleeping bag (& daypack).Don’t send gear that you could not afford lostor broken (expensive cameras, cell phones, andother electronics). A handy disposable camerawould be just fine.Follow your equipment list, ask questions,borrow from friends.