Backcountry Steward Internship-High Peaks South (16 week)

Expected Dates
May 19, 2014 to September 7, 2014
Site
NYS Department of Environmental Conservation
Position ID
PO-00486812
Backcountry Stewards are seasonal positions assigned to public lands along the eastern shores of Lake Ontario, in the Adirondack and Catskill Parks, on State Reforestation areas, and on Conservation Easement lands that are under the jurisdiction of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC). Individuals in these positions will perform a variety of duties which involve the preservation, protection and enhancement of the natural resources and the safety and well-being of the public using these resources. Stewards will be trained by Department personnel at the beginning of their internship and will then be supervised by the area Manager or his/her designee.

The High Peaks Wilderness is the most highly used Wilderness area in the State of New York. This position requires the willingness and ability to travel by foot and work alone in remote, extremely rugged terrain and inclement weather conditions. There will be daily contact and interaction with visitors of all types and the need to educate and answer questions of the public. The incumbent will be required to work weekends. There will be extended periods of time camping alone (up to five days in a given week) in the backcountry. However, when noty camping for work, the incumbent will be responsible for their own off-site housing. The ability to use a map and compass (or GPS unit) and strong backpacking skills are essential. Specific duties and responsibilities include the following:

- Provide information and education to users relating to the proper use and protection of the natural resource;
- Promote Leave-No-Trace practices;
- Provide assistance and advice to users regarding trails and other facilities;
- Inspect trails and other facilities to determine condition and maintenance requirements;
- Perform routine maintenance on trails and other facilities using hand tools (e.g. bow saw, loppers, etc.) including blowdown removal, trail side cutting, and the removal of debris and garbage;
- Take inventory measurements, both quantitative and qualitative, of specific trail and camping area conditions, and patterns of use, to assist the Department in its resource management programs;
- Collect information on user group size, use of specific trails, and use of camping areas;
- Assist with other SCA and volunteer trail maintenance projects;
- Participate in search and rescue activities as needed;
- Under the direction of a Forest Ranger, assist in back country emergencies, including search, rescue, injuries, and evacuations;
- Provide radio communication for emergency operations;
- Maintain records including a handwritten daily journal, prepare and submit reports relating to daily activities, public use, maintenance needs, and special reports as needed;
- Participate in training as required; and
- Other duties as assigned connected to the conservation project.

Minimum Qualifications
- Must be 18 years of age or older;
- Must have Associates Degree or 60 college credit hours in environmental education, natural resources management, biology, environmental studies, or a related field preferred or 6 months experience in environmental conservation work in a park or recreation setting;
- Must have a valid driver’s license;
- Must be physically capable of performing field work common to the assigned work area over extremely rough terrain and during inclement weather; and
- Have strong backpacking and wilderness camping skills
- Must be certified in CPR and as Wilderness Advanced First Aid.
- Have taken an outdoor education course or have outdoor education experience;

Conviction of a felony may bar appointment or result in removal after appointment.
  • The High Peaks Wilderness is the largest wilderness area in New York State. It is located in the eastern region of the Adirondack Park in northern New York. The wilderness encompasses approximately 200,000 acres of Forest Preserve land. The topography consists of most of the high elevation mountains in northern New York, ranging in height to 5344 ft above sea level. The terrain is steep and demanding. There are several hundred miles of marked trails and many miles of unmarked paths in this wilderness area.
  • Orientation training, back country trail work, campsite and facility monitoring, Leave No Trace
  • No
Main Area of Focus
Recreation Mgmt
Education, Training & Skills Expected
Communications
some coursework or experience
Earth Sciences
some coursework or experience
Mathematics & Data Analysis
some coursework or experience
Recreation Management
some coursework or experience
Resource Management
some coursework or experience
Backpacking
competent without supervision
GPS
competent with supervision
Hand Tools
some experience
Public Speaking
competent with supervision
Trail Maintenance
some experience