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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How many people are involved with the MBU?
As of January 2020, there are 130 active MBU members.

Who oversees the MBU?
The MBU works in conjunction with the National Park Service, California State Parks, and the Mountains Recreation & Conservation Authority.

Why are so many organizations involved in the management of the MBU?
Because we patrol on parklands administered by the different federal, state, and local agencies.

What is the MBU's goal?
The MBU mission is to enhance visitor experience and safety during stays in the parks. We do this by providing a readily visible and approachable presence via mobile and stationary patrols.

Do MBU members have peace officer status?
No. We are volunteer employees of the various park agencies and have no law enforcement authority. While it is part of our duties to encourage and exact visitor compliance with a park's rules and regulations, we are neither empowered nor equipped to cite or arrest, only to observe and report any violations to the appropriate authorities via radio.

What training does an MBU candidate receive?
Each MBU member is certified by the National Park Service, California State Parks, and the Mountains Recreation & Conservation Authority and receives extensive training in first aid, CPR, radio use, trail etiquette, park philosophy, and interpretive and historical information.

If I have a compliment or complaint about an experience I've had with an MBU member, to whom should I send it?
Send any correspondence by email to

In what parks do you patrol?

Here is a list of some of the parks:

  • Cheeseboro/Palo Comado Canyons in Agoura Hills
  • Circle X Ranch in Malibu
  • Franklin Canyon in Beverly Hills
  • Happy Camp in Moorpark
  • Leo Carrillo State Park in Malibu
  • Malibu Creek State Park in Calabasas
  • New Millennial Trail in Calabasas
  • Point Mugu State Park in Malibu
  • Rocky Peak in Chatsworth
  • San Vicente Mountain Park/Westridge Canyon in West Los Angeles
  • Topanga Canyon State Park in Topanga
  • Upper Las Virgenes in Calabasas
  • Will Rogers State Historical Park in Pacific Palisades
  • Zuma/Trancas Canyons in Malibu.

For a complete list and more details, visit our Trails We Patrol page.

I visit the parks regularly. Why is it I only rarely see MBU members on patrol?
While many MBU members patrol throughout the weekdays and weekends on parklands throughout the Santa Monica Mountains, it's easy to see that with such vast park systems, our patrols can only cover a small percentage of territory. But we're out there. Just keep your eyes open for our hard-to-miss yellow jerseys.

I'm new to mountain biking. Where can I go to develop my skills?
The Concerned Off-Road Bicyclists Association (CORBA) offers its Introduction To Mountain Biking Skills class, the first Saturday of every month from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Malibu Creek State Park. This class is free ($2 parking fee). For more information, call 805/480-0500.

Is the MBU involved in any programs that introduce children to mountain biking?
MBU volunteers regularly assist with CORBA's Youth Adventures Mountain Biking program, which gives children ages 8 - 17 an opportunity to experience nature first hand via mountain bike rides in the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. The rides take place from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays. Bikes, helmets, gloves, water bottles, and snacks are provided. For more information or to schedule a rides, call 818/248-5895.

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