Our field staff bring a wide range of backgrounds and training to their role. The one element that they all have in common is the desire to provide participants with the most meaningful, educational, and fun programs possible. Every day, Deer Hill field staff make an impact on the lives of our participants through their leadership and presence. Our field staff instill in our participants a strong foundation of outdoor skills, service work experience, communication and interpersonal skills in the mountains, deserts and rivers of the Southwest U.S. Field staff often find that their work with Deer Hill is deeply fulfilling because it is meaningful. They experience the daily richness of supporting participants as they take risks, build new skills, and ultimately learn to connect more fully with the wilderness, others and themselves.

In the spring and fall, Deer Hill works with schools and private groups.
In the summer, Deer Hill operates multi-week programs for participants ages 11-18.
Summer participants sign up individually and include adolescents with varying outdoor experience from the US and around the world. Participants also include high potential, low-income scholarship recipients, supported by the Deer Hill Foundation and other non-profits.

Deer Hill Programs include a combination of two or more of the following activities:
Whitewater Rafting
Cross-cultural Service
Conservation Service

Deer Hill Basecamp is located in Mancos, Colorado and programs run in the following areas:
Weminuche Wilderness Area, Colorado
La Plata Mountains, Colorado
Lizard Wilderness Area, Colorado
Cedar Mesa, Utah
San Juan River, Utah
Green River, Utah
Colorado River, Utah
Moab, Utah
Navajo Nation
Hopi Nation
Zuni Nation

Starting wages:
Program Leaders: $140.00/day
Instructors: $106.00/day
Assistant Instructors: $80.00/day
Wages increase with days worked at Deer Hill, other professional experience on wilderness trips, SPI or Swiftwater certifications, or a major or minor in outdoor education.

Food and lodging provided while on contract (and include: meals, beds, laundry facilities, staff storage area, kitchen, horseshoe pit, pond, fruit trees and 130 acres—if you’d rather sleep under the stars).
Access to pro purchase programs, providing steep discounts to top name, outdoor gear brands.
Professional development trainings to support Field Staff growth and continuing education.
Deer Hill offers a Spring Staff Training and a Summer Staff Training, free of charge, for new and returning Field Staff. Attendance to one of the trainings is required for all new Field Staff.
Additional trainings and opportunities for development are available regularly.

Tagged as: Backcountry Skills, Camp Counselors, Climbing Skills, Instruction and Guiding, Teaching/Education


21 years of age minimum.
Able to work legally in the United States.
Valid driver’s license and clean driving record.
Current CPR and WFR certifications, minimum.
Able to pass criminal background check with CBI and FBI.
Able to manage participant and program needs 24/7 for the duration of the contract.
Successful professional experience guiding and teaching groups in wilderness settings.

Preferred Skills:

River experience rowing oar frames and paddle boats.
Motivated to create impactful, meaningful experiences for adolescents.
Flexible and able to adapt to changing situations.
Desire to be of service to others.
Self-aware and engaged in own personal growth.
Excellent communication skills.
Affective organization abilities.
Able to work well independently and with others.
Grounded, fun, and hard-working.

About Deer Hill Expeditions

Deer Hill leads expeditions for individually enrolled participants during the summer months, and groups for which we have designed a custom program. Additionally, Deer Hill maintains its 130-acre Basecamp as a comfortable, nurturing environment that supports adventures into the field, or makes for a relaxing retreat. While other companies might focus on leading a tour, or teaching specific technical skills, Deer Hill goes beyond these services to include the richness of supported self-discovery.

Application Instructions

https://deerhillexpeditions.campmanagement.com/apply/dhe Fill out the application through our website here, please make sure to address any pertinent experience, including professional and personal experience, that is relevant to this position. Feel free to email [email protected] with any questions!