Professional Trail Crew Leadership Positions–Asheville, NC

Position Post Date: December 19th, 2018

Join our team: Do you have a strong work ethic and a desire to help protect your public lands? Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards (SAWS) is hiring for the following seasonal positions.

Position Title: Trail Crew Leader/ Assistant Trail Crew Leader

Position Duration: April 9 to Mid-August or April 9 to Early October, 2018

Status: Temporary/Seasonal

Compensation: $14.50/hr-Assistant Trail Crew Leader

$15.00/hr- Trail Crew Leader

Position Supervisor: Regional Program Manager

Location: Asheville, NC


About Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards (SAWS)

We are a passionate and versatile team of employees, volunteers, and supporters, dedicated to a mission of educating, cultivating, and empowering an engaged public for the stewardship of protected public lands. We pride ourselves on being a transformative conservation non-profit: for the resource, the individuals who work with us, federal land management agencies, and our local partners. SAWS was founded in 2010 to respond to a regional need for stewardship focused on federally designated wilderness. We work with the national forests in the mountain regions of Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Kentucky, West Virginia and Virginia to provide stewardship through our four program areas: trail crews, wilderness rangers, volunteers, and education.


Position Summary

The Trail Crew Leader and Assistant Leader will lead a crew of six, comprised of the Trail Crew Leader, an Assistant Trail Crew Leader, and 4 Trail Crew Members. Trail Crew Leaders will complete nine weeks of orientation and hands-on training, followed by 10-18 weeks working on multiday backcountry field projects for up to ten days at a time. Trail crews may address projects including, but not limited to:

  • Trail relocations
  • Erosion control (installation of water bars, grade dips, log or stone steps, etc.)
  • Mitigating campsite impacts
  • Reestablishing trail tread
  • Brushing trail corridors and removing downed trees
  • Baseline species data collection
  • Non-native and invasive species removal
  • Public education (Leave No Trace, bear safety and awareness, Wilderness education, etc.)
  • Boundary Marking


Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  • Complete trail crew leader training, including trail construction, trail maintenance, Wilderness Medicine Training, crosscut saw, backcountry camp set up and procedures, Leave No Trace ethics, and backpacking skills
  • The ability to be flexible and adjust plans and decisions as the season, work week or day unfolds
  • Lead and inspire crew members to effectively complete critical backcountry stewardship projects
  • Ability to communicate directions, project specifications and constructive criticism throughout the season.
  • Teach leadership skills and facilitate leadership opportunities for crew members
  • Maintain tools and equipment
  • Assist SAWS staff in developing and maintaining strong, positive relationships with US Forest Service personnel, partner organization staff, and partner organization volunteers
  • Track project progress daily and accurately report completed work at the end of each project
  • Craft and curate media (blogs, photography, video, etc.) to share for reporting and documentation
  • Follow and implement SAWS organizational policies in the field
  • Maintain an inclusive, safe, positive, and fun working environment
  • Maintain high standard levels for project completion



In addition to enthusiasm for the SAWS mission, you will have the following:

  • Ability to travel on foot over rough terrain for up to 10 miles per day while carrying 60 lbs or more
  • Ability to work in a remote and primitive setting with diverse groups of people
  • Desire to be a member of an enthusiastic, hard-working team and transformative non-profit organization
  • Six to nine months of backcountry trail work experience
  • Crew Leader applicants need at least three months of leadership experience in a backcountry, field-based position


To Apply

Please apply on the form below.

Questions regarding the application may be submitted via email to Katie Currier, Program Manager at


Applications will be accepted until positions are filled.


SAWS is an equal opportunity employer and provides a drug-free workplace. SAWS values an inclusive work environment, free from discrimination of any kind.




2018 Employment Application

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