Short-Term Job Adventures California
California Dreamin'! From San Diego and Big Bear in Southern California to Santa Cruz and Lake Tahoe up north—California is the place to be.
1,000-acre retreat center overlooking the Pacific Ocean in Sonoma County (120 miles north of San Francisco)
Odiyan Buddhist Retreat Center is home to a crew of hardy Volunteers donating their energy and time to the projects, buildings and lands of this Northern California center considered to be one of the most spectacular Tibetan Buddhist centers in the world. Residential Volunteers are currently needed in construction, landscaping, gardening, vegetarian cooking, art and sculpture. Revel in natural beauty, fresh air, clean water and nutritious vegetarian food while making a valuable contribution to the preservation of enlightened knowledge for the benefit of all humanity. You will receive housing, meals, optional classes in Tibetan yoga and Skillful Means, meditation and a $150 per month living allowance. Applicants must be able to commit to six months or more and have the physical health and stamina for daily manual work and the desire to engage themselves in a program that challenges the body, mind and spirit.
Experience the Extraordinary @ Odiyan
• Now seeking outdoors-loving Gardeners to work in the organic vegetable garden beginning this summer with an interest in using everyday experience as a means for self-discovery.
Odiyan Retreat Center
Outdoor Education Instructors
The campus is located on 74 acres of pine and hardwood forest with views of surrounding peaks. Located in the San Bernardino Mountains of Southern California, the region offers just about any type of outdoor recreation and endless places to explore. In the winter months you can go snowboarding in the morning and surfing in the afternoon. Within 2 hours of Pali you can find Joshua Tree National Park, Big Bear Lake or the Pacific Ocean. While up on top of a mountain in a small community of about 5,000 you are 30 minutes from San Bernardino and 2 hours from Los Angeles.
Seeking enthusiastic, outdoor-minded Instructors ready to live and work in the mountains! Outdoor Education Instructors will teach a variety of classes that focus on science, outdoor education and leadership during the day, and then take on the role of Cabin Instructor with responsibilities during meals and at night. The curriculum covers a broad array of topics and activities such as alternative energy sources, building/launching rockets, squid dissection, outdoor cooking, skits, astronomy, team building sessions, low ropes course, three high ropes courses, quad zip lines and more. Applicants must have a Bachelor's degree, extensive experience in the camping and/or experiential education fields, be comfortable and confident supervising and teaching students in large and small groups and be able to have fun with kids, laugh at your self and be silly! Positions typically run from early January to early June and mid-August to mid-December, with shorter term contracts possible. View the experience »
30778 Hwy 18
P.O. Box 2237
Running Springs, CA 92382
(909) 867-5743 ext. 241
(909) 867-7643 fax
General All Purpose Staff, Kitchen Staff, Housekeeping/Grounds Crew Leaders, Assistant Dining Room Managers, Nightwatch Relief, Office Assistants
Located five miles from South Lake Tahoe on the shores of Fallen Leaf Lake, a gorgeous Sierra lake with a breathtaking mountain backdrop. Behind the resort is Desolation Wilderness, a national wilderness area with some of the best hiking and scenery in the Sierras.
If an exciting hospitality job and beautiful mountain setting is beckoning you either this spring or fall, the Stanford Sierra Conference Center is a place where you'll have the opportunity to work and play hard, make new friends and help guests enjoy their stay. The staff comes from all walks of life—college students, professionals between jobs, experienced workers in the service industry, travelers or people taking time of. Positions are available every spring and fall. There are also some specialty jobs for the spring and three-season positions that run from spring through fall. To begin your working journey with Stanford Sierra, visit the Conference Center Staff site.
Fall Season Employment Alert
• Stanford Sierra will be accepting applications for the fall season (September 6th to November 9th) beginning on July 1st. Keep an eye on the application page!
Stanford Sierra Conference Center
P.O. Box 10618
South Lake Tahoe, CA 96158-3618
(530) 541-2212 fax
Summer Outdoor Educator Interns, Day Camp Educators, Coordinating Educators and Adventure Guides
Berkeley, California is the ideal place to blend outdoor skills with an urban environment. The Bay Area has more protected wild space than any other metropolitan area in the country. From mountains to coastline to oak savannah to redwood forests, Trackers takes city kid students into real nature, every day.
Leading the way in innovative, creative outdoor education, Trackers Earth Bay Area summer camps are rooted in fantastic legend and authentic traditional skills, and fueled by compelling story and old-school outdoor lore and adventure. Educators and Mentors are needed for the Summer Youth Camps to create thoughtful, challenging adventures in outdoors, story, and folk wisdom. Prospective staff members must have the know how (or a great willingness to learn) in primitive skills and bushcraft, folk craft and homesteading, archery and bow making, kayaking, fishing and foraging, live action role playing, martial arts, zombie survival, and or blacksmithing. Staff training begins on June 11th with the summer season running through August 25th. Most day camp positions are MO-FR, 7:45am to 4:15pm. If you maintain high professional standards, are able to set and communicate boundaries for youth in a positive way, think on your feet, and are creative in challenging situations, learn more at TrackersBay.com!
Trackers Earth Bay Area
3049 Adeline St.
Berkeley, CA 94703
If you live in the Portland, Oregon area, check out TrackersPDX.com.
Summer Camp Staff (Residential Counselors, Day Camp Counselors, Program Heads and Farm, Healthcare and Kitchen staff); Year-Long Residential Internships (Environmental Education, Community Supported Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Youth Development and Public Programs)
Los Altos Hills — in the foothills of the Santa Cruz mountains 40 miles south of San Francisco.
Live, work and play on a 1,600-acre wilderness preserve and organic farm near San Francisco in the Santa Cruz mountains! Year-Long Residential Internships (varied start dates) offer the unique experience of living and working on a small farm that builds marketable skills for the next generation of thoughtful educators, innovative organic farmers, and creative non-profit leaders. Learning about sustainable living skills, animal care, environmental education, nonprofit administration and hands-on, interactive and creative teaching techniques round out the internship experience. Cultivating the genuine curiosity, self-esteem, and well being of campers, Summer Staff are integral in creating a place where everyone can develop self-confidence and experience a sense of belonging. From residential counselors and program heads to farm & garden, outdoor specialists and kitchen staff, there are over 50 summer job opportunities available. Summer positions run from early June to mid-August.
A Day in the Life: An Incredible Internship Experience
Is it true that we can live out our dreams by creating our own realities? Find out how Cori's internship experience at Hidden Villa unlocked her door of opportunity.
26870 Moody Rd.
Los Altos Hills, CA 94022
Residential Staff in the Kitchen, Guest Facilities, Outdoors (Gardening, Groundskeeping and Maintenance), and the Book Bindery
Redwood-studded coastal hills of Sonoma County (120 miles north of San Francisco)
Interested in developing your unique potential? The Work Study Retreat Program at Ratna Ling invites participants to learn and grow while living in a spiritual community of volunteers from around the world. Gain experience in a variety of work related to the dual mission of preserving Tibetan Buddhist sacred culture in Asia while transmitting the wisdom and knowledge of that culture to the West. Program includes room and board, evening classes on a range of Buddhist subjects, and a small monthly living allowance. The initial commitment is six months to a year. Must be at least 23 years of age and need not be Buddhist or have any religious affiliation to apply. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or apply now.
Ratna Ling Retreat Center
35755 Hauser Bridge Rd.
Cazadero, CA 95421
(707) 847-3777, ext. 115
Summer Multi-Sport Instructors and Activity Specialists
Day Camp Instructor positions available in the Bay Area region of California (Campbell, Mill Valley, Moraga Oakland, Palo Alto, Santa Cruz, Saratoga and Walnut Creek) and in the Colorado Front Range (Boulder, Castle Rock, Colorado Springs, Denver, Golden, Highlands Ranch and Lafayette) and Colorado Mountain Camp, a residential camp in Bailey, Colorado.
This isn't your average job (it’s way, way cooler!). As a member of the Avid4 Adventure team, you’ll spend your days doing the outdoor activities you love—climbing, kayaking, mountain biking, backpacking—all while inspiring a new generation of intrepid adventurers and outdoors enthusiasts. It’s crazy fun, blissfully tiring and endlessly rewarding. Whatever kind of job you’re looking for—day camp, residential camp, focused on one sport exclusively or a new one every day, Avid4 Adventure has the job for you! Positions are available from mid-May to mid-August with varied start/end dates, and an option to extend work through the fall season. Read full job descriptions and apply online.
P.O. Box 287
Boulder, CO 80304
(800) 977-9873 x103
• Get a glimpse into working at Avid4 Adventure
Counselors for children 8-16 years old, Village Leaders, Food Services & Kitchen Team, an Arts Director; Puppet Master, Master of Fun & Games (large-scale game/logistics coordination), and a Wilderness Trips Leader
Nestled in the Sierra Nevada foothills near the historic gold mining town of Nevada City. The camp's 80 forested acres rest on the west shore of beautiful Lake Vera, about about half way between Sacramento and Lake Tahoe, just outside of Nevada City. You are welcome to drive here, and they will also happily pick you up, in costume, from the Sacramento airport or train station.
Work, play, learn, struggle and grow in a vibrant community this summer. Discover the inspiration that comes with surrounding yourself with other people committed to making a difference in the lives of children through play and learning. Reap the rewards of a healthy and feel-good lifestyle. Enhance your professional and personal growth. Help foster self-confidence, independence, life-long recreational skills, safe risk taking, an appreciation for community, caring, honesty, respect, responsibility, environmental awareness and fun in children ages 8-16! The initial application process consists of six questions (sharing your heart, mind and spirit!) so they can get to know you as a real, living, breathing human being. If you're thrilled by the idea of working hard, playing harder, and forming inspiring close relationships with other staff and campers alike, you're in the right place. Drop by for a visit or email email@example.com for more information. Must be available from mid-May to mid-August.
Summer 2017 Update
• Camp Augusta has filled all of their summer positions. Check back this December when they start recruiting for summer 2018 (positions will fill quickly!).
17530 Lake Vera Rd.
Nevada City, CA 95959
Organic Farm & Environmental Education Residential Leadership Training Fellowship
The 1-acre Berkeley farm is producing a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, and includes two greenhouses, chickens, bees, and several teaching tents.
Build community. Discover your best self. The 3-month Urban Adamah Fellowship integrates urban organic farming, social justice work, and progressive Jewish living and learning for young adults ages 21-31. Twelve to fourteen Fellows are selected each season to operate the farm and education center, intern with community organizations addressing issues at the intersection of poverty, food security and environmental stewardship, and learn an approach to Jewish tradition that opens the heart and builds joyful community. 2017 Fellowships are available during the spring (March 13–May 26), summer (June 11–August 25) and fall (September 4–November 21) with admission done on a rolling basis until all positions are filled.
• View the Urban Adamah Fellowship experience »
Office and Special Programs Manager
1151 Sixth St.
Berkeley, CA 94710
(510) 649-1595 x101
Outdoor Education Instructor/Naturalists
Located about 30 minutes south of Big Sur and halfway between LA and San Francisco on historic Highway 1 in a pine-oak forest overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Here you’ll find find secluded beaches, redwood forests, some amazing state parks and incredible coastline biodiversity: whales, sea lions, elephant seals, sea otters and dolphins are all regular visitors.
Do you have a fascination with the natural world? Come teach hands-on marine science and forest ecology on the central California coast at The Coastal Institute at Camp Ocean Pines! Coastal Institute Naturalists will teach groups of 10-15 students about the ocean, the forest and everything in between, and lead off-site adventures via 15-passenger vans that include tide-pooling, hikes, kayaking and beach walks. Naturalists also supervise meal times and lead camp activities including singing songs, performing skits, facilitating low ropes activities and target sports (archery and tomahawk throwing), and other duties as camp requires. With multi-week trainings, professional development workshops, and the opportunity to be observed and evaluated throughout the season, you will also become a part of a supportive community that values personal and professional growth. Positions are available during the spring (mid-February to mid-June) and the fall season (mid-August to mid-November). For more information, visit CoastalInstitute.org/jobs.
Outdoor Education Director
The Coastal Institute
Camp Ocean Pines
1473 Randall Dr.
Cambria, CA 93428
Cooking & Kitchen Team, Gardeners, Guest Relations and Support Staff
40 minutes from the town of Willits in Northern California. Natural surroundings include the wild and scenic Eel River, lots of hiking and biking trails on property and in the adjoining Mendocino National Forest, farm animals and a garden if you want to learn more in your spare time
Come explore the cycle of employment opportunities with Emandal: a unique place that not only provides a learning environment, but a chance to do something constructive while pondering life's options. 2017 employment opportunities include a Guest Relations Coordinator, Off Season Support Staff (2), Clothesline Concierge, Seasonal Support Staff (5-8), Cooking Enthusiasts (1-3) and Assistant Gardeners: Kitchen Garden (2) or Ornamental Gardens (1). If you like the idea of working in the country away from the noise of the city with a congenial bunch of people, then working at Emandal might be for you. The season runs from March/April to mid-October, with employment dates that vary by position. Summer positions are also available from May 21st to September 21st. Explore current job openings or connect with Emandal for more information.
Emandal 2017 Employment Update
• All positions are currently filled. If you would like to be notified in case a position for the 2017 season becomes available, please send an email to Emandal stating which position(s) you are interested in, and include your phone number.
Emandal – A Farm on a River
16500 Hearst Post Office Rd.
Willits, CA 95490
Instructors (Naturalist & Counselor)
Located at Camp Cedar Crest, near the town of Green Valley Lake in the San Bernardino Mountains, ECOS Institute welcomes students, teachers and staff to life at 6,500 feet above sea level. While base camp is close to several towns and to all of the advantages of civilization, you’ll enjoy the thrill of living in a remote, natural area, with fresh air, clean water and the chance to connect with the natural world.
Playing the essential dual role of Naturalist and Counselor, ECOS Instructors will lead students on hikes through Yellow Pine Forest and Oak Woodland, guiding them through a science curriculum based in geology, wildlife biology, forest ecology and astronomy. Instructors will also will serve as the primary support for a cabin of 10-15 students and lead team-building activities, facilitate songs and games and resolve conflict. Positions run from early October through early June, with Thanksgiving, winter and spring breaks. Recruitment of staff will continue throughout the school year, with more Instructor positions to be filled in January. If you “get” kids (you can be firm, fair and understanding), love the outdoors, communicate an understanding of science, take pride in learning and self-improvement and are comfortable getting silly, fill out the online application.
Emerald Cove Outdoor Science Institute
P.O. Box 1027
San Clemente, CA 92674
• Check out the Camp's location »
The High Trails sites are located off Highway 38 about halfway between Redlands and Big Bear in Southern California. Deep in the heart of the San Bernardino National Forest is their neck of the woods, known as Barton Flats. This area bustles in the summer with camps and vacationers, but as August draws to a close and everyone heads back to school, a peaceful quiet settles over the majestic Ponderosa Pines and high mountain streams. With this peace comes an opportunity to look past the paved roads and to explore, to see nature as it should be seen; uncrowded, untouched and beautiful.
Do good and fight the man! If you have a college degree, a healthy amount of experience both with kids and the outdoors and the willingness to work and live in a small, close-knit staff community, High Trails Outdoor Science School is looking for you to work as an Outdoor Instructor. High Trails has three staff trainings during the school year: September is their largest training, with smaller trainings occurring in January and March. Most contracts are written for the traditional school year, from mid-September through the end of May. Check out their staff page and you'll see why they believe they're the most progressive place in the country. Give 'em a holler with questions or apply now.
High Trails Outdoor Science School
P.O. Box 2640
Big Bear City, CA 92314
(800) 428-1851 phone/fax
• View the staff experience »
An environmentally conscious outdoor travel company that specializes in small group single and multi-day tours in the San Francisco Bay Area, with California destinations that include Yosemite National Park, Muir Woods, Napa and Sonoma wine country, the Pacific Coast and Lake Tahoe.
Want to make great money, live in beautiful San Francisco and get paid to show people the most amazing national park in the world? Incredible Adventures is now seeking summer Tour Guide/Drivers who are reliable, safety-driven, and organized with a desire for adventure. Based in San Francisco, the team is an adventurous group who thrive on being in a casual and laid-back workplace that is offset by challenging and dynamic jobs. Those interested must be able to attend an on-the-road training in San Francisco in late April and make a commitment through October 31st. Wages are per trip, with starting daily rates ranging from $170-$265 plus tips. Experienced Guides can bring home more than $400/day. If you have a customer-service oriented disposition, a fun and outgoing attitude, and enjoy interacting with people from all over the country and the world, fill out the online application.
2095 Jerrold Ave., Suite 100
San Francisco, CA 94124
Residential Outdoor Science Instructors
Surrounded by magnificent vistas, valleys and meadows on 1,500 acres of pristine Yellow Pine forest, SNJ's Grizzly Creek Ranch is a modern campus that offers excellent program resources, including a challenge course, hiking trails, archery range and pond. The campus is within convenient travel distance to Lake Tahoe, Reno, Reno/Tahoe Airport and Plumas National Forest.
Sierra Nevada Journeys is built on a simple premise: Science education is a necessity, and nature’s classroom is a great place to teach it! During the spring and fall seasons, Residential Outdoor Science Instructors are responsible for leading and educating a group of 12–15 students (primarily from the 5th and 6th grades) throughout the week, including facilitating large group activities, leading meals and night programs. During the summer season, SNJ delivers both traditional summer camp programs and tailored programs for special needs and leadership development groups, with activities that include outdoor exploration, hands-on science programs, archery, swimming, camping and more. Outdoor Science positions run from late February to November; applications for summer camp seasonal hires begins every March.
Grizzly Creek Ranch Program Manager—Now Hiring!
• SNJ is seeking a Program Manager with experience delivering and organizing outdoor school programs and summer camps. You must be a highly organized professional who can effectively facilitate incredible weekly programs while managing program instructors and support staff.
Sierra Nevada Journeys
5900 Grizzly Rd.
Portola, CA 96122
The first Ranger sites include Joshua Tree (CA), Northern California, the Texas desert, and the Great Lakes.
You’ve heard of a gap year. You’ve dreamt of a sabbatical. You’ve got an itch to explore the wilderness of the world, but haven’t figured out how. You’re an explorer. A bit of a nomad. A hospitality-minded soul with an eye for small details. Introduce Getaway. They build tiny houses, place them in the middle of nature, and rent them out by the night to people looking to disconnect and recharge. They’ll trade you a paycheck and lodging in return for a one-year-commitment of taking care of their tiny houses, along with the guests who rent them. After a year, you’ll have the chance to re-up your contract somewhere completely new and different. You’ll work hard, but you’ll also have the chance to disconnect in the woods or desert, to focus on the other things you care about… like writing, reading, painting, making music and exploring. Flexible hours may include weekends, nights, short/long shifts, with 3 days off per week. If you’re naturally friendly, hospitable, a problem solver, and able to self-manage, email your resume and letter of interest to Kai Gilsey.
• Forgo the tent and give a tiny house a test drive. Read more or watch this video.
Director of Guest Experience
Conservation Corps, Conservation Volunteers, Emerging Professional Internship Corps (EPIC)
The Santa Cruz home base offers programs from Sequoia National Park to Lake Tahoe and beyond. Positions are also available in Arizona, Utah and North Carolina.
Experience a different way of life. Meet people from around the world. Enjoy spectacular landscapes. Contribute your energy to meaningful and challenging outdoor projects. Take pride in your team's accomplishments. This is American Conservation Experience—providing a range of voluntary service programs for both American and international participants: Conservation Corps, Conservation Volunteer and EPIC Internships. Typical projects include trail construction and maintenance, native plant re-vegetation, non-native species removal, fence construction, erosion control, and wilderness restoration over a period of 8 days to 6 months throughout the year. View current job opportunities and apply online.
American Conservation Experience
• Flagstaff, Arizona National Headquarters
Arizona, Utah & North Carolina applicants
• Santa Cruz, California Regional Office
California & International applicants
Camping & Community Based Team Leaders, Field Staff and Crew Members
Across Northern California, Oregon and Washington
Imagine working and camping in remote, rugged and beautiful natural areas throughout the Pacific Northwest and getting paid for it! The Northwest Youth Corps is about accepting challenge, getting in shape and being outdoors. It is a life where boots, sleeping bags, mosquito repellent and dips in icy cold lakes replace the usual comforts of home—time where building a campfire, pitching a tent and cooking in a Dutch oven becomes second nature. Field Staff responsibilities include supervising the successful completion of conservation projects, implementing environmental educational programs, coordinating camp life, preparing paperwork, leading weekend recreation trips (for residential programs), and learning skills to safely operate chainsaws. Read through the Field Staff FAQ, apply online or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more info. Positions are available throughout the year.
• Are you fluent in American Sign Language? NYC also hires ASL Crew Leaders to work outdoors with deaf/hard of hearing youth and young adults.
Northwest Youth Corps
2621 Augusta St.
Eugene, OR 97403
(541) 349-5060 fax
Group Travel Leaders
Throughout the U.S. and Canada
Do you love road trips, the outdoors and want to explore North America? Combine your passion for travel with the adventure of a lifetime! Doubling as tour guide and driver, Group Leaders for AmeriCan Adventures take small groups on trips throughout beautiful landscapes of North America that encompass camping in National Parks, exploring big city life, tasting local cuisines, and so much more. If you have the skills to accommodate a diverse group of travelers and the desire to challenge yourself daily, visit AmeriCanAdventures.com to learn more and apply. Positions are available from April to September. Sign up to receive email updates on new job postings, deadlines and info on what it's like to live the life of a Group Leader.
Outdoor Adventure Instructors
California (and throughout British Columbia, Alaska, Oregon, Washington, Colorado and Wyoming during the summer months, and North Carolina during the fall season)
Through adventures designed to foster community, build confidence and teach leadership, Adventure Treks operates 13 to 30-day wilderness-based programs for teenagers. Instructors are in charge of managing group dynamics, coordinating logistics and leading activities that include backpacking, rock climbing, mountaineering, mountain biking, caving, canoeing, cooking, orienteering, Leave No Trace concepts and general environmental education. There is the opportunity to work both summer (early June to mid-August) and fall school group programs (late August through late October). To apply, email your resume to to Joe Sisti. Applications are due by April 30th for summer positions and August 15th for fall positions.
P.O. Box 1321
Flat Rock, NC 28731
(828) 698-0399 phone/fax
(888) 954-5555 toll free
• VIEW the method behind the magic at Instructor Orientation and meet the faces of Adventure Treks from last season.
Throughout the United States, Europe and the world (40+ countries)
Do you have a zest for life with a passion for people, travel and the outdoors? Backroads is actively recruiting Trip Leaders for their luxury biking, walking, hiking and multi-sport vacations geared for groups of families, solos or couples. Whether by foot, bicycle, kayak, raft or ski, Trip Leaders are the catalyst for a fun, interesting, safe and personally rewarding experience for their group of active travelers. Leaders enrich each trip with their personality and passion for travel and the outdoors, while providing outstanding customer service and sharing their love and knowledge of the area. In addition to Trip Leader positions, US & Canadian Camp Crews and global Trip Prep Specialists are hired each year. Positions are available from May through October.
|Summer 2017 Employment Alert
• Backroads has finished recruiting for the 2017 season. Applications for summer 2018 will be accepted beginning on October 1st!
801 Cedar St.
Berkeley, CA 94710
Therapeutic Community Life Sharing Work Opportunities: Coworkers (specializing in crafts, dairy work, elder care, farming & gardening, weaving, and the wood workshop), House Parents, House & Workshop Leaders, and Service Volunteers
Soquel (Five acres overlooking Monterey Bay)
Camphill Communities California is a life-sharing community for adults with developmental disabilities located near Santa Cruz, California. Their vision of community living involves relationships of mutual respect, ongoing education, meaningful work and natural circles of support. Daily life includes providing human support and caregiving, craft work, working in the farm or garden, cooking wholesome meals, engaging in the healing arts, or celebrating seasonal festivals together. Full room and board, medical insurance, vacation time and a monthly stipend is provided.
A Day in the Life: Camphill Communities California
Learn more about a Camphill coworker who found his place to help, change, and influence the lives of others while being submerged in a culture of genuine acceptance, love, caring, thought, idea and action.
• Learn more about Camphill Communities California
Camphill Association of North America
P.O. Box 1045
1601 Pughtown Rd.
Kimberton, PA 19442