I am constantly searching for job opportunities that allow me to make good money while also taking significant amounts of time off to hunt. I have been lucky the last few years to have seasonal work that put me in a position to hunt successfully. Here are a few tips and opportunities to consider.
Fishing and Rafting Guide
In 2016 I guided fishing trips in Alaska. My room and board was covered, so at the end of the summer I had enough money to buy a hunting dog and a new bow. I wrote a blog a little over a year ago describing how I was able to land the job. Harrison has guided rafting trips in Colorado the last couple summers and will be in Washington this upcoming year. The great thing about guiding is that you are fired just before September. Instead of having to find a new job every summer, or put in your two weeks notice in August, your boss lets you go just as the elk start bugling.
Medical Certifications and Opportunities
Harrison currently works weekends as an EMT while he finishes school. EMTs are in high demand in a lot of areas and the certification also would allow you to become ski patrol or other outdoor opportunities. Many EMT’s will stack their 36 hours into the front half of the week so they can take a four day weekend. Temporary positions like hospital ER techs in ski towns hire EMT’s for the busy time of the year, which is a good seasonal winter job. One woman that worked at the same lodge as me was actually paid more per hour to fill in temporary nursing positions on short notice than if she were to work year round.
Personally, I took a wilderness first responder course in South Africa for fun. The course ended up fulfilling requirements for guiding in both Alaska and Oregon. Keep your eye out for cheap CPR courses at work or school in order to be prepared if an opportunity arises.
Talk about hunting. You never know who you might run into. Last week I was getting my haircut and it turned out the haircut lady’s husband’s best friend ran a company developing outdoor products. Most of the time they don’t hunt and you have to stand around awkwardly, but every once in a while a new connection comes through. I ran into a guy hiking in Oregon this past summer and I will work on his boat this summer
Fast Money, Long Days
I took December off to hunt coyotes in Utah, and now I am working seventy hour weeks in Las Vegas. Over the course of the year I will work the same number of hours as the average person, only my breaks all come at the same time.
Different industries have busy times throughout the year. For jobs such as working at a resort, summer camps or construction, managers hire on temporary work for the summer. Currently, I am working at a warehouse assembling booths for exhibitions in Las Vegas. The job pays well, and I am only hired on for two months. The best part is that I will take a month long climbing trip before heading to Alaska.
I have found that my flexibility to work for a few months at a time has opened up opportunities to me that would not have otherwise been available. Though many companies may see your short-term availability as a drawback, if you find the right industry it becomes a strength. Please let us know if you have any other seasonal work opportunities that you feel we should know about.
Summer Seasonal- Waiter, lifeguard, summer camp, construction. Trail maintanence, guiding
Winter Seasonal- Retail stores (REI, Cabelas, Bass Pro), UPS driver, ski resorts
Spring Seasonal- Warehouse work, farm work (planting), EMT