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Thursday, May 6, 2010

Campground Hosting

If you are interested in becoming a campground host in Oregon here's a great link to help get you started. This takes you to the Hosting Overview page for Oregon Parks and Recreation. It's the best place to get information about hosting at Oregon's parks and will help you get started.

The process is actually fairly easy. All you need to do is download the online application, fill it out and send it in to the place they want you to send it. During the process you will list the areas you would like to work along with the kind of work you like or are best suited for. Once you have been accepted as a host you will be given training as to your duties and other important things park hosts need to know about. This includes how you handle various situations, (rangers do the enforcement, not volunteer hosts, OK!) or operate various pieces of equipment and so on. Oregon does background checks on all it's employees so you should expect that. I like this idea for obvious reasons.

Deb and I have worked in a number of campgrounds in the past and we enjoyed both our duties and the friendships we have made with other hosts and the park rangers. These have been long lasting relationships and we always look forward to seeing our old host friends again. Some of the parks we have worked in include, Nehalem Bay State Park, Manhatten Beach Wayside, Ecola State Park, Milo McIver State park, Catherine Creek State Park, and Wallowa Lake State Park. Each park had different duties for us to perform so our experience is varied. Our last volunteer duty station was Fort Vancouver Natl. Park. This was a wonderful experience in a wonderful park.

Deb and I don't continuously work as park hosts all the time and only take those jobs as our situation dictates. Sometimes we want to and sometimes we don't. We let "things" help us decide. If you want more information about campground hosting please send us a note or comment and we will be happy to contact you and answer your questions as best we can.

One thing I will recommend is that you should visit the campground you think you want to volunteer in ahead of time if possible. Try to visit with the local host coordinator and leave a copy of your application with them, along with a resumes. This has to be a copy of the same one you sent to Salem, and you have to send one to Salem. You can't just hand an application to the host coordinator and not send one to Salem. Clear on that? That way when the coordinator is looking for someone from the list they will have your faces to go with your applications. You also need to get started early. These positons go quickly, especially in the popular parks so plan ahead. It can take years to get into some parks, because the old hosts always have first refusal to return or not.

Hope this is helpful!


  1. We stayed at Loon Lake Lodge & RV Resort (, one of the more scenic Oregon coast RV parks that offers camping, boating and fishing near the coast. It's an excellent Oregon campground that makes a good basecamp for deer and elk hunting! The lodge also offers cabin and yurt rentals. The Loon Lake Lodge and RV Resort is located about 45 minutes from Reedsport. It offers year-round resort Oregon coast lodging in cabins, yurts and motel rooms, or waterfront camping in scenic tent or RV park sites with full-hookups, satellite TV and Wi-Fi - all on one mile of lake frontage on the scenic Loon Lake. The marina offers jet ski rentals, boat rentals and pontoon boats.

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