Job posting: Backpacking guide for 2018 trips

I am looking for one additional person to help guide my 2018 trips. Employment will be short-term and seasonal: probably 11 days total in July or September, in either Colorado or California. You will work with other world-class backpacking guides, including Alan Dixon, Flyin’ Brian Robinson, Mike Clelland.

Necessary qualifications

Please apply only if you have:

1. Female expertise. Are you intimately familiar with the female backpacking experience? Can you speak confidently to women about preferred clothing and equipment, hiking style and safety, and women-specific hygiene concerns? Could you successfully lead an all-female trip in 2019?

2. Extensive backpacking experience. Have you slept on the ground (or between trees) for hundreds of nights and in a variety of seasons and ecosystems? Do you have a robust backcountry skill set?

3. Community credibility. Have you been recognized by media outlets for your accomplishments? Have you written a book or developed route guides? Does your website and/or social media profiles have notable followings? Do you work with outdoor brands as an athlete or ambassador? Have trail associations, hiking clubs, retail stores, or community organizations asked you to speak for their group?

4. Interpersonal skills. Do you enjoy working with people? Can you effectively communicate your thoughts? Are you comfortable managing groups and group dynamics?

5. Physical fitness. Can you comfortably hike consecutive 20-mile days? (Assume that you are: on-trail, in rolling terrain, and at an oxygen-rich elevation (e.g. a moderate section of the AT or PCT); and carrying a normal overnight kit.) Are you comfortable hiking off-trail, on uneven and sometimes loose surfaces, and at elevations up to 12,000 feet?

I am most concerned with the aforementioned qualifications. But I will give greater weight to applications that demonstrate:

  • Prior guiding, instructing, or general teaching experience; and,
  • Efforts to professionalize your backpacking experience.


You will be paid a daily rate for days in the field, plus one preparation day. Travel expenses will be reimbursed.

To apply

Thank you for your interest. This position has been filled. I am no longer accepting applications. Please do not send one, thanks.

Please be succinct in your application. Wow me with your most noteworthy qualifications, not every somewhat relevant qualification.

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 email me.

Andrew Skurka Adventures LLC is an equal opportunity employer.

Posted in on December 21, 2017


  1. Christine Martens on December 22, 2017 at 7:13 am

    Are you accepting male applicants for this position?

    • Andrew Skurka on December 22, 2017 at 7:41 am

      I am accepting applications from any candidate with the necessary qualifications described.

  2. Gement on December 22, 2017 at 12:16 pm

    Thumbs up for putting that first requirement in first place. It’s good to know you are prioritizing that.

    • Andrew Skurka on December 22, 2017 at 3:14 pm

      Yes, it’s a high priority in this instance, and my hope is that this new hire will bring value-added in this one specific area to the guide roster, not simply match the current competence level.

  3. Samanta on December 24, 2017 at 3:27 am

    Are you taking foreigners?

    • Andrew Skurka on December 24, 2017 at 9:31 am

      You’re welcome to apply, but the travel costs would probably make the arrangement not cost effective for either or both parties.

  4. sandra corso on December 30, 2017 at 6:03 pm

    I would love to apply since I have been working as a Wilderness Educator and Outdoor Adventure Guide for the past 25 years. But I don’t hike 20mi/day everyday. Not my style.

    PS. My website is down since I’m doing a major editing job.

    • Andrew Skurka on December 31, 2017 at 7:15 am

      I understand if that’s not your style, but it is for some of the clients so I try to service it.

      • sandra on December 31, 2017 at 3:05 pm

        Totally Understand. The best of luck with you business. I follow you in the internet and have a copy of your book. Happy New Year! sandra

  5. Robert on May 6, 2018 at 8:00 pm

    Looking for a volunteer? I am relatively new to backpacking (got most of my gear in order this spring), lots of time car camping and hiking/trail running. I have done solo 3 day treks in the desert where I live and will be testing out new gear with my fiancee during june in the PNW. I then plan to head back to AZ, alone, via CO in early July. Planned to backpack there anyway during July. I have the first three weeks of July free. I am a 39 year old male physics teacher of 15 years, taught ages 12-60+, fit (used to race bicycles), and mostly looking to learn and help. I would love to act as apprentice, I will have my own gear and buy all my own food, etc. I would hopefully get some great knowledge from you and others out of this.


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