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Trail Crew Leader - Backcountry Response Team

Washington Trails Association

Regional, Washington

Job Type Temporary
Salary Details $22 - $23/hour

Inspiring Hikers to Create Trails for Everyone, Forever

Washington is home to extraordinary hiking destinations, including desert dunes, wild beaches, tranquil mountain tops and raging rivers. Washington is also home to a community of people who are passionate about exploring and protecting these places. This constituency—our members and supporters—is key to the future of trails in Washington. 

Washington Trails Association (WTA) is the nation’s largest hiking and trail maintenance nonprofit. We have a 50-year legacy of engaging the hiking community to ensure Washington's trails stand the test of time.  With more than 27,000 members and an online community of over 300,000 and growing, we are connecting people to the outdoors—from everyday adventures to backcountry explorations. Each year 4,500 WTA volunteers perform over 160,000 hours of trail maintenance across the state. We mobilize hikers as public lands advocates, trail stewards, and on-the-ground experts sharing knowledge with fellow hikers. WTA's strength is our community and our vision depends on fostering an inclusive organization where everyone feels welcome and represented. Together we can ensure there are trails for everyone, forever.  

Position Summary

Washington Trails Association is seeking a Trail Crew Leader who loves working with people and shares our commitment to trail stewardship and volunteerism. The Trail Crew Leader works outdoors leading volunteers in building and maintaining trails on public lands. The position’s primary responsibility is to lead multi-day backcountry work parties across the state of Washington. This is a temporary, full-time, field-based position based in central Washington and reports to the Central and Eastern Washington Regional Manager.

Primary Responsibilities

Leading volunteer work parties (70%)

  • Ensure physical and emotional safety for a volunteer crew of diverse ages and backgrounds, including ensuring that every member of the crew follows all COVID safety protocols for the duration of the trip
  • Support, motivate, and train volunteers to complete a variety of trail projects. Projects may include annual maintenance, tread construction, drainage structures, and constructions of steps, turnpike, puncheon and retaining walls
  • Effectively manage emergency situations following WTA’s emergency response protocols
  • Positively represent WTA mission, programs and membership in all interactions with volunteers, trail users and others

Preparing for work parties (15%)

  • Arrive at each work party with tools, refreshments and work plan
  • Coordinate work party projects and plans with WTA staff and land manager
  • May communicate directly with volunteers via email and phone prior to work parties
  • May assist other WTA staff and volunteers in identifying appropriate volunteer trail projects

Documenting work parties (10%)

  • Ensure morning safety review is delivered to volunteers and documented
  • Maintain and submit Sign-in and Liability Release for volunteers in a timely manner
  • Prepare and submit summary report and thank you email to volunteers for each work party in a timely manner
  • Report all incidents affecting the safety, health, and well-being of volunteers
  • Using a WTA cell-phone, provide digital photo documentation of project progress and volunteer engagement

Outreach & other (5%)

  • May assist efforts to engage hikers, volunteers and community groups in other WTA programming (e.g. representing WTA at events in the region)
  • Perform other tasks in the front and back country to ensure program success
  • Potential to engage youth through school programs and trail maintenance events

Experience, Skills, Knowledge, and Values

Competitive candidates will highlight the following in their application, or express willingness to learn:

  • Demonstrated commitment to WTA’s mission and values on diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Demonstrated ability to create a crew community where every member feels included and valued
  • Demonstrated skills in trail maintenance and building
  • Ability to effectively manage emergency situations
  • Ability to accept and integrate feedback graciously, and give effective feedback to team members
  • Ability to work in an outdoor environment, including hiking and backpacking up to 6 miles daily in a variety of terrain, and follow minimum impact guidelines
  • WFA and CPR certification minimum requirement valid through the duration of employment; WFR certification preferred
  • Valid driver’s license and ability to drive a truck on highways and dirt roads
  • Ability to work weekends and 10-hour days 
  • Reliable internet and printer access (library and other public access is fine) for work party planning and documentation
  • Demonstrated experience leading a team in an outdoor setting

Schedule

The Trail Crew Leader is a temporary position starting April 3, 2023 and continuing through October 2, 2023. During the season this position leads volunteers in backcountry trail projects typically 4-5 days in length, with a few trips of 7 days. Generally, work parties will occur Thursday-Sunday unless otherwise defined, and requires working most weekends. Work party-related communication as well as documentation of activities may occur outside of work party days. Mandatory paid training will be April 10-14, 2023 in or near Seattle, WA, with an additional paid training May 19-21, 2023. There is an unpaid summer break July 24-30. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, vaccination requirements are in place for WTA staff and volunteers.

Compensation

The hourly rate for this position is $22.00 - $23.00 per hour depending on experience, for training, day trip crew leading, administrative and scouting assignments. Multi-day trips are paid $880-920 per 4-day Backcountry Response trip (BCRT) and $1,100- $1,150 per 5-day BCRT. A supplementary per diem rate of $50/day will be provided for multi-day backcountry trips. WTA provides a cell phone, hard hat, work gloves and safety glasses. WTA does not provide boots, clothing or other personal outdoor and backpacking gear required for fieldwork, but does provide a $200 reimbursement to offset wear and tear on personal gear. Position is eligible for paid holidays, sick leave, health stipend and an employer match retirement plan. 

A WTA vehicle will be provided for transportation to work parties. Reimbursement for up to 250 miles per trip will be provided for staff members who use a personal vehicle to fulfill program needs, unless commuting to/from base of operations.  

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

WTA is committed to advancing equity and continually working to become a more inclusive organization. We believe WTA, and Washington’s hiking community, is made better by people with varied backgrounds, identities, abilities and lived experience. People of color and others with identities that are underrepresented in the outdoor industry (including but not limited to: gender identity, class, socioeconomic status, conviction history, sexual orientation, age, ability, and background) are strongly encouraged to apply.

WTA does not discriminate in employment opportunities or practices on the basis of age, color, gender identity, marital status, honorably discharged veteran or military status, national origin, citizenship or immigration status, political ideology, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, genetic information, the presence of any sensory, mental or physical disability, status as a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking, or any other status or characteristic protected by federal, state or local law.

HOW TO APPLY

To apply: Click on or copy the following URL link to our application form to apply for this position: https://forms.gle/hachkP55j7cCwxJ89 and email your resume to seasonaljobs@wta.org. If there are other open seasonal positions you would like to apply for, include this information in the application form. The position is open until filled. Finalists will be asked to submit to a background check of criminal and driving history. We create opportunities for candidates to discuss any results prior to hiring decisions being made.

If you have any questions, please contact seasonaljobs@wta.org. View other available jobs at www.wta.org/jobs.

When you apply, please indicate that you are responding to the posting on Conservation Job Board.

Category General / Stewardship, Outdoor Recreation
Tags Trail Maintenance, Outreach