Marin County Search and Rescue is staffed with people of various ages, backgrounds, and experience levels.   We all share a common interest in serving our community and helping others. Most members are avid outdoors people — climbers, hikers, backpackers, cyclists, and runners.  We maintain active membership at around 90-100 people.  To maintain our staffing levels, we operate two recruitment periods each year.  Normally, one begins in late winter, and a second takes place in late summer.  Our next application deadline is August 9th, 2019!  

We suggest you read what we do and the latest mission summaries to give you a better idea of our team.

If you are interested in knowing more about our team, you are invited to attend any of our General Meetings (listed on this site’s calendar).  We also strongly suggest that you review the Frequently Asked Questions outlined in the link below.

For your application to be considered, you must attend at least two General Meetings (by the application deadline) and preferably several more.  Attending meetings helps you get a feel for our team and the commitment required, and gives our members a chance to get to know you. It also provides you with a good overview of our scope of operations.

We require a minimum active commitment of two years, and hopefully many more.  This means that youth members should apply in their freshman or sophomore year. We sometimes consider juniors in the fall cycle, but give preference to those who can serve longer. In addition, youth applicants must be at least 14 years of age and in high school by the first day of boot camp.

If you are the parent of a prospective youth member, your child needs to be the point of contact with us! We demand a lot from youth members and expect adult-level engagement from them. 

For many people, volunteering for search and rescue is a rewarding and fun experience, but it’s important to recognize it also can be difficult. Search and Rescue (SAR) missions sometimes involve violent crime scenes, finding or assisting in the recovery of human remains, providing medical assistance to severally injured persons and other difficult circumstances. SAR members may also interact with family members or friends of the subject of a SAR mission who are very emotional.  The team offers support to members to help process and cope with difficult situations and members can select out of assignments if necessary. SAR missions can be emotionally challenging and it’s important for people who choose to volunteer for SAR to be confident that they feel emotionally resilient enough for the work and have good mental health.

All new members must meet our basic fitness requirement before attending boot camp.  If you are selected for boot camp, you will be required to complete the following basic fitness test in less than 1 hour and 35 minutes carrying a 25lb backpack.  We will schedule a couple of testing dates between your interview night and the start of boot camp.  We strongly recommend that each of you try the following hike before applying so there are no surprises down the road!   Here’s a map of the test — it’s a 4.0 mile loop with 1,500 feet of elevation gain.  It starts just off Lucas Valley Road at the tennis courts located at the junction of Luiz Fire Rd and Creekside Dr.  Continue counterclockwise from there around the loop.

An online version of the map route is AVAILABLE HERE.

Our training calendar is very dynamic, just like our team.  Please check it frequently to see what events are open to prospective members and also to confirm the location and time of trainings.  General Meetings are at the new Sheriff’s Office Emergency Operations Facility (directions and a map.)  The date or location for a meeting may change, so please check our calendar before heading to a meeting!

The application will be posted about a month before the deadline. Once you’ve completed the application, submit it and print a copy for yourself before closing your browser.  You will be able to edit your responses after submission (while the browser is still open).  Read the application carefully before you begin to ensure you have all the required information.  Make sure you have a good internet connection and plenty of time to complete the application. Google Chrome is the best browser to use with this application.

Finally, We have limited resources to train new members and can’t accommodate every applicant in every cycle. Please don’t be discouraged if you are asked to reapply to the next cycle. We have many outstanding members who weren’t selected in their first application cycle. 

Note the electronic application process is fairly new.  If you have any issues with it, email us at the “recruiting coordinator” link below.

Fall 2019 Intro and MANDATORY Boot Camp Dates (PDF)

Frequently Asked Questions (PDF)

If you have any unanswered questions about the unit or membership, feel free to use the email address link below and we will try our best to get you a prompt answer!

Email our Recruiting Coordinator 


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