Outdoor Science Instructor

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Deadline to Apply:

Wednesday, January 31, 2018, 5:00pm


Jawbone Flats, OR
United States

Job Category:


Job Type:



Job Description:

Location: Opal Creek Wilderness Area, Oregon
Work year: Seasonal: March 19 to November 15, 2018
Responsible to: Program Manager; Program Director
Compensation: $80/day, plus housing, utilities, and partial board

Our Story:

The Opal Creek watershed is 35,000 acres of protected rainforest, part of the last remaining low-elevation old-growth forest left in the Pacific Northwest. Soaring trees dripping with moss, crystal-clear streams, and a diversity of old-growth-dependent species make Opal Creek a unique gem in Oregon’s crown. At its center is the historic off-grid mining town of Jawbone Flats, our base of operations since the Opal Creek Wilderness was created in 1996.

At Opal Creek Ancient Forest Center, all of our work is based around one simple idea: people will protect what they care about, and they will care about what they know. Through our outdoor school, summer camps, and workshop programs, we bring kids and adults face-to-face with the outdoor places that make Oregon great—pristine mountain streams, uncut vistas, and old-growth forests.

Responsibilities of the Position:

Responsibilities of the position are listed under each of our four program areas:

Outdoor School (30%)

  • Teach to a variety of age groups and backgrounds, including public and private elementary, middle, and high school classes, and university programs
  • Learn to teach the Opal Creek curriculum; topics include old growth forest ecology, stream ecology, geology, and cultural history.
  • Collect and process program participant contact information

Backpacking Expeditions (30%)

  • Lead backpacking expeditions with students 10-18 years old in the Opal Creek, Bull of the Woods, and Mt. Jefferson Wilderness Areas
  • Prep food and gear for a week-long expedition
  • Organize and clean gear for the following expedition

Hospitality (30%)

  • Host cabin renters, ensuring their stay is comfortable
  • Drive gear shuttles; load and unload cabin rental gear
  • Clean cabins to rental standards
  • Staff the company store, selling merchandise to participants and the general public
  • Engage with the general public as they pass through Jawbone Flats

Workshops (10%)

  • Lead interpretive hikes for all youth, family, and adult workshops; assist the workshop instructor in all programming needs
  • Manage logistics of workshop
  • Host workshop participants, ensuring their stay is comfortable

We have a small staff and everyone is required to help in all aspects of running a remote residential facility with a diversity of programs. This position may be asked to assist the kitchen and facility departments at times. 

Requirements of Position:

  • Bachelor’s Degree, preferably in a natural science or education discipline, or equivalent experience
  • Past teaching experience, formal or informal
  • Field instruction, outdoor school and/or previous camp experience preferred
  • Backpacking experience
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • A curiosity and passion for continuous learning
  • A desire and the ability to live and work in a remote residential environment with a small number of people
  • Possesses the qualities of integrity, adaptability, enthusiasm, and good humor
  • Able to lift heavy objects, up to 50 pounds when necessary
  • Able to pass a background check
  • Able to drive company vehicles
  • Current driver’s license and able to qualify for coverage under our insurance
  • Wilderness First Responder certification (required by time of employment)

Position Start Date:

Monday, March 19, 2018

Job Duration:



How to Apply:

Please send a resume and cover letter to Megan Selvig, Program Director, at mselvig@opalcreek.org. This position is open until filled.

There are two rounds of interviews for this position, with Instructors starting mid-March.

Opal Creek Ancient Forest Center is an equal opportunity employer. We will not discriminate and will take affirmative action measures to ensure against discrimination in employment, advertisements for employment, compensation, termination, promotions, and other conditions of employment against any employee or job applicant on the bases of race, color, gender, national origin, age, religion, creed, disability, veteran's status, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.