Summer Backpacking Intern

The deadline for this job has passed and it is not visible on the eePRO Jobs page.
Opal Creek Wilderness

Deadline to Apply:

Wednesday, April 1, 2020, 5:00pm


Opal Creek Wilderness, OR
United States

Job Category:


Job Type:


Job Description:

  • Position: Summer Backpacking Intern
  • Location: Opal Creek Wilderness Area, Oregon
  • Work year:  Seasonal: June 8 to August 21
  • Responsible to: Program Manager; Program Director

Who We Are

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.


Who You Are

  • You enjoy being outside and spending time with kids. You are enticed by Opal Creek Ancient Forest Center’s mission and the prospect of connecting our campers and guests to this beautiful place.
  • You are excited to spend your summer navigating the peaks and valleys of Oregon’s wilderness areas with youth.
  • A remote residential living and working environment intrigues you. You look forward to disconnecting from distraction and forming strong bonds with staff, guests, and the wilderness in your backyard.
  • You thrive in a collaborative environment. You value working on teams with diverse perspectives and identities.
  • You are always learning. You are curious and unafraid to ask questions.
  • You embrace a challenge; you are open to and excited by the unpredictability that comes with working in a 1929 mining town in the woods.
  • You have your own unique interests. Perhaps you play a musical instrument or practice bird calls. You would enjoy solo time and social staff barbecues.


Role Impact and Responsibility

As the Summer Backpacking Intern, you will gain exposure and experience in the field of outdoor education. Through our Opal Creek Expedition program, you and a co-lead take 10 campers into the wilderness and teach them the ins and outs of backpacking, building their confidence with every step. As a seasonal residential employee, you will live and work in the off-grid town of Jawbone Flats for the summer: June 8 to August 21. At the conclusion of this internship, you will find that you are well prepared to begin work in the field of outdoor education. Specific responsibilities of the position are listed below:

Backpacking Expeditions (75%)

  • Co-lead backpacking expeditions ranging from 5 to 8 days, for campers 10-18 years old in the Opal Creek, Bull of the Woods, and Mt. Jefferson Wilderness Areas
  • Teach observational science and outdoor skills, including Leave No Trace principles, on the trail
  • Prepare food and gear for a week-long expedition
  • Organize and clean gear for the following expedition

Hospitality (25%)

  • Provide friendly, attentive, and professional customer service
  • Clean cabins to rental standards
  • Drive gear shuttles; load and unload cabin rental gear
  • Sell merchandise to participants and the general public
  • Engage with the general public as they pass through Jawbone Flats

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

  • 19 years of age or older
  • Past experience working with youth ages 8-18
  • Hiking or backpacking experience
  • Demonstrated commitment to equity and inclusion through past job experience, personal activism, or other pertinent experience
  • A willingness to be coached and open to feedback
  • Able to lead youth on hikes up to 9 miles
  • Able to lift heavy objects, up to 40 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 Aid certification (required by time of employment)



Position Start Date:

Monday, June 8, 2020

Job Duration:



How to Apply:

Send a resume and cover letter to Megan Selvig, Program Director, at, and be sure to address any pertinent experience relevant to this position, including professional and personal experience.

Deadline is April 1st. There are two rounds of interviews for this position. We will offer the position by mid-April with Interns starting June 8th.

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.

Job Compensation:



Compensation Information:

Compensation: $300/week, plus housing, utilities, and partial board

$300/week, with 10-12 days worked in a bi-monthly pay period
Housing in a private room with off-grid hydroelectricity
Meals from the Jawbone Kitchen

Contact Name:

Megan Selvig

Contact Phone:


Contact Email: