Every year, ACES offers an intensive Summer Naturalist program at ACES at Hallam Lake, our visitor center and 25-acre nature preserve in the heart of downtown Aspen. Summer Naturalists receive valuable training and experience while leading guided hikes and conducting environmental education programs at Aspen Mountain, Snowmass, the Maroon Bells, ACES sites at Hallam Lake, the Catto Center at Toklat, and Rock Bottom Ranch, and at various other iconic locations around Aspen. Many of ACES employees first come to the organization through the Summer Naturalist position, including many of our small administrative staff.
The Summer Naturalist program has dual purpose. First, ACES aims to provide the best possible learning and working experience to Naturalists. The second goal is to offer informative and inspiring educational interactions through ACES’ guided tours and classes.
Since 1985, over 400 Naturalists have participated in this respected program, many moving on to meaningful careers as teachers, wildlife biologists, university professors, environmental lawyers, veterinarians, non-profit administrators, sustainability experts, and more. More than 80% of all ACES employees first come through the Summer Naturalist position, including much of our small administrative staff who focus on programming, public relations, development, and finance.
View ACES’ Summer Naturalist slideshow and get to know the Naturalist crew from 2020.
Lead interpretive nature walks at Aspen Mountain, Snowmass, and the Maroon Bells in the White River National Forest
Assist with management of the Hallam Lake visitor center and 25-acre nature preserve
Learn about Rocky Mountain ecology
Teach environmental education programs for children
Conduct bird of prey programs with ACES’ resident injured birds of prey
Educate the public on ACES efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through renewable energy projects
Involvement in special projects including indoor plants and live animals, indoor trout stream and rearing troughs, garden and guided trails, and birds of prey program
Degree or focus of study in the natural sciences, environmental education, or related field
Strong communication skills
Self-motivated with a sincere interest in the environment
Experience working with the public
First Aid & CPR certification
Must be a US citizen
About Aspen Center for Environmental Studies (ACES)
Aspen Center for Environmental Studies (ACES) is a non-profit environmental science education center with four sites in the Roaring Fork Valley. ACES provides programs in environmental science and ecological literacy for everyone from school children, to leaders and decision makers, working to build a community of knowledgeable, motivated and capable environmental stewards. ACES' mission, "To inspire a life-long commitment to the Earth by educating for environmental responsibility, conserving and restoring the balance of natural communities and advancing the ethic that the Earth must be respected and nurtured" has guided our programming since 1968.