The 2023 guiding season is almost underway: a trip schedule will be released later this month, and the application period will open in mid-December.
To help me run the program next year, I plan to hire an Assistant Director. This is a full-time and year-round position, and I hope that the candidate steps up as a Co-Director or Director after one or two seasons.
Update, Nov 27, 2022: Thank you for your interest in this position. I am no longer accepting applications.
The Assistant Director (AD) will:
1. Run the Planning Curriculum and Plan Like A Pro courses, which entails creating, updating, and distributing instructional content, and managing a four- to six-person instructor team that reviews assignments and works more one-on-one with clients and students.
2. Assist me with critical operational functions for the guided trip program, such as:
- Reviewing applications and forming groups;
- Applying for, keeping track of, and submitting monthly and year-end reports for commercial permits and wilderness permits;
- Setting and coordinating travel plans for guides and clients;
- Creating trip itineraries and topographic maps;
- Reviewing and acting on feedback submitted by clients and students in post-trip and post-course surveys;
- Preparing for the upcoming season, like by drafting a calendar, updating website content, and creating the application system.
Eventually I’d like to involve the AD in other internal operations (accounting, payroll, insurance), guide team training, marketing, and related initiatives like the scholarship program, wilderness medicine courses, and content development.
If the AD resides in or near Boulder, Colo., they could also help manage a local two- to three-person team that (a) plans and prepares the group meals and (b) packs the program van with food, supplies, and loaner gear before each trip, and unpacks it when it returns.
Guiding trips is not an essential responsibility of the AD — it’s helpful to have someone in the office who can serve as an emergency contact for groups in the field, finish preparations for upcoming trips, and communicate with clients and new applicants. However, it’s better overall if the AD can guide some trips, because they’ll better understand the guide and client experience and because they could manage some locations without me being on-site.
Applicants must be:
- Independently productive, with regular but not extensive oversight;
- Entrepreneurial, by continually identifying opportunities to improve and grow the program;
- Attentive to detail, because small mistakes can have huge ramifications in this business; and,
- Professional, with good communication skills, high emotional intelligence, willingness to give and receive feedback, and a client-first mindset.
I prefer candidates with prior experience as an outdoor guide, instructor, or educator, or as an operational employee for a guiding or outdoor recreation program.
Strong content development skills — such as writing, or audio or video production — are a major plus, since content on this website generates interest in the guided trips, online course, and guidebooks.
Existing familiarity with my guiding program and/or me is helpful. Such candidates will have more realistic expectations of the position and will be more plug-and-play from the start.
Google Sheets is the program’s software cornerstone. If you’re comfortable with spreadsheets that have a dozen tabs, hundreds of rows of data, and column names that start with C, keep reading. Google Classroom, CalTopo, Gaia GPS, and MailChimp are also commonly used.
Ideally, the AD will live in or near Boulder, so that we can regularly meet and work together in-person and so that they can (help) manage local preparation of food, gear, and supplies.
If they AD does not live in or near Boulder, they must at least live within few hours of Boulder, so that they can get here easily when it’s really needed.
Applications from individuals who live more than four hours from Boulder, Colo, will not be considered.
Geographic requirements have been increased since this job opening was first posted. I have received multiple applications from qualified applicants who live within four hours of Boulder, which is my preference.
This is a full-time position with an expected workload of 32 to 40 hours per week. The work flow is seasonal, with the first six months of the year being predictably busier than the second six months.
Side work (e.g. your own small business, freelance contracts) is acceptable, so long as it does not and will not compete with or take priority over the AD position.
Compensation and benefits
Total compensation and benefits will total $65,000 to $70,000, depending on experience and assuming 40 hours per week. The package consists of:
- $45,000 to $50,000: base salary;
- $4,500 to $5,000: profit-sharing bonus equal to about 10 percent of base salary in FY2023, with the share of profits increasing in subsequent years;
- $11,250 to $12,500: 401(k) contribution of up to 25 percent of base salary; plus,
- Monthly subsidy for health insurance and technology (internet, phone).
Vacation time is unlimited. It’s ideally used mid-summer through fall, after we’re through most of the season but before we start ramping up for the next one.
How to apply
Update, Nov 27: I am no longer accepting applications for this position.
To view and complete the Application Form, click here. Applicants must upload a resume and/or a letter of interest that demonstrates relevant experience. The Application Form will accept PDF’s and other document file types like .txt and .docx. To upload files you must be logged into your Google account, if you are not already.
Application deadline I will accept applications through at least Monday, November 21, or until the position is filled. When the position is filled, I will disable the Application Form and update this page.
Andrew Skurka Adventures LLC is an equal opportunity employer.
If you have general questions about this position, leave a comment below. I will answer it there, to avoid multiple private answers to the same questions.
If you have a question that pertains specifically to your application, please contact me directly.
I am a Nepalese citizenship and currently walking as a trekking Guide here in Nepal.
So, my question is ; can I applly to get a guiding job with you??
I expect to receive applications from a number of qualified US citizens, so jumping through extra hoops to put a non-citizen in this role will probably be difficult to justify. Thank you for your interest though.
I live just outside of Aspen, CO. Would all in-person meets require being in Boulder proper?
For someone who does not live in Boulder, most meetings would be virtual. But all of The physical stuff is here, like the van, food, supplies, and loaner gear, so any involvement with the preparation, packing, or transporting of these items would require meeting in Boulder.
Hey Good Morning Andrew,
I wanted to throw my hat in the ring for your Assistant Director. I have years of experience creating and running Programs as well as Program Management. I do live in Pa and I know you said you were looking for Co. I would love the opportunity to at least have you look over my resume. I also have a Rock Climbing and Hiking background along with other outdoor activities.
My only question is about your timeline, with the deadline being November 21, would you ideally have someone beginning in December or after the New Year?
Either way, I just applied! I’ve been a follower of your program and projects for a while now and was looking at relocating to Boulder the past couple of weeks for several reasons- finding this job posting was a bit of affirmation.
Looking forward to hearing from you.
Mid-December is ideal.
I am actively looking for job opportunities that relocate me to a mountain community, and believe my skills and experience fit the AD position. To quote from my letter of interest: “I bring to the job over 30,000 hours of outdoor education experience; six years of [adventure-based] program direction experience at [major university]; and intimate knowledge of alpine travel, thanks in part to three solo thru-hikes of the Sierra High Route.”
I have my application ready to send . . . which means my face fell when I hit this note: “Applications from individuals who live more than 4 hours from Boulder, Colo, will not be considered. Please do not submit an application, thank you.”
Are you making any exceptions for applicants seeking to relocate? If so, how would you like us to handle this question on the Google Form?
I’m looking for applicants who currently live within four hours of Boulder, and ideally much closer than that, sorry. The advantages of having a local worker are significant, and with the number of local applicants already I don’t believe I will need to look outside this geographic radius or to await a relocation.
Makes sense; Boulder is full of awesome people. One of many reasons I’d like to move there. Good luck in your search!
Where can I find more job listings? Do you have a LinkedIn page or an email newsletter?