Volunteer Campground Host

The Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument (MSHNVM) and Mount St. Helens Institute (MSHI) are recruiting for individuals or couples with a motor home or travel trailer to act as campground hosts for the 2014 summer season.  The position requires camping at Lower Falls Campground, Kalama Horse Camp, Pine Creek Information Station, Sunset Campground and/or Ape Cave Recreation Area. Volunteers assist with visitor information, restroom cleaning, and light campground maintenance.  See specific campground location below for site-specific duties.

Campground Host Opportunities

The Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument is part of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest in southwestern Washington. Mount St. Helens offers beautiful scenery and many recreational opportunities for photographers, hikers, equestrians, kayakers, mountain climbers and outdoor enthusiasts. Mount St. Helens is a popular day-trip destination for residents of Portland, Kelso-Longview, and Vancouver and is a popular overnight camping area for people across the nation.


A campground host is a Forest Service volunteer who agrees to spend all or part of a summer living in a campground. Hosts assist the Forest Service in managing campgrounds. They play an active role in the care of the campground, carrying out such duties as litter pick-up, routine restroom upkeep, general campground cleaning and maintenance. Hosts are provided with a free campsite, an identifying sign, training materials, and information brochures for public distribution. Reimbursement for propane and generator fuel may be provided.

A positive attitude is perhaps the most important qualification for being a good campground host. Other qualifications include strong communication skills and a desire to be with people, since visitors often ask hosts about places to go, where to find services, and how to solve problems that might arise in the campground. An interest in the outdoors and willingness to provide information and education about the areas history and highlights are also very desirable.

This season Mount St. Helens has five sites in need of hosts: Lower Falls Campground, Kalama Horse Camp, Sunset Falls Campground, Ape Cave Recreation, and/or Pine Creek Information Station. All require camping.  Below is a description of the campgrounds. Hosts are asked to make a commitment of at least 30 days, but full season positions are available and preferred.

If you are interested in applying please complete our online application or for questions about any of these positions please contact Randy Peterson, at 360. 449.7830 or Volunteer Programs Manager Allison Watson at 360.891-5199 or awatson@mshinstitute.org.

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