Sea Kayaking Guides & Paddling Instructors

Seasonal Full & Part-Time, and Internships Available

We hire our guides based on who they are just as much as on what they can do. We're looking for people who love providing memorable experiences for others within the amazing natural areas in which we work. Good judgment, a love for nature, and ability to work with groups of diverse people is a must.

Already have sea kayaking experience? Great!  If not, we offer training to get you up to speed. Sea Kayak Skills is an intensive 4 days of sea kayaking rescues and coaching, and includes a American Canoe Association level 3 skills assessment. We also offer Wilderness First Aid if you aren't already certified. Once you pass first aid and the level 3 assessment you are invited to join our New Guide Training, which is another 9 days of sea kayaking leadership and group management training, learning all about kayak repairs, driving 15 passenger vans, food preparation and the natural and cultural history of our amazing location. At the end of this training period all staff are on the way to becoming American Canoe Association (ACA) Trip Leaders. Staff development opportunities are also offered weekly throughout the summer season.

Experienced guides and returning staff have opportunities to advance their skills and gain ACA Instructor certifications, which lead to pay increases..

The Work

Guide/Instructors lead half day, full day, and multi-day sea kayak camping trips and teach safety and instructional courses in kayak and stand up paddle boarding. Guides may also drive, fix boats, and have other work opportunities around the shop. This job requires you to work with people of all backgrounds, while being able to lift kayaks, work often long hours, and be out in all types of weather. All staff need to be able to communicate well and work as a team, be in good shape, and be willing to learn. You can expect a positive work environment and a lot of opportunities for fun and personal growth. 

Our Guide Structure

Level 1: Apprentice Guides - This is the period when you shadow senior guides on trips and training courses. Apprentices shadow until they are ready to be an assistant guide. 

Level 2: Assistant Guides - Are developing outdoor leadership experience and gaining paddling skills. Level 2 guides assist on day trips and skills classes. Assistant guides are required to have first aid certifications, as well as proven on-water leadership skills and judgment.

Level 3-5: Lead & Mentor Guides - The Lead Guide positions require solid outdoor leadership skills and rough water rescue ability. Often, lead guides possess an instructor certification in sea kayaking as well as advanced first aid certification such as Wilderness First Responder. Our hope is to get all new guides to level 3/Lead Guide within the first month of work, since level 3 is the minimum required to lead trips on your own within the park. 

Qualifications & Responsibilities

  • Timely and able to work early and late hours.

  • Good communication skills.

  • Sense of humor

  • Friendly people-centered attitude. 

  • Willing to spend the time with clients to make it the best experience possible. 

  • Confident problem-solving attitude

  • Own transportation to and from work

  • Love of the outdoors!

  • Other desired skills: Ability to do minor repairs, grace under pressure, paddling skills, leadership and teaching experience.

Compensation & Benefits

We have a five-level system, with paddling skill, time in the field, and leadership experience bringing commensurate increases in compensation. Substantial increases are given to guides for gaining certifications, returning for following seasons, and for previous experience.

First season guides are offered free skill training prior to our new guide training period, which is paid. Once new guides 'check out' to lead trips on their own, base pay rate moves up to approximately $13/hr. Add our contract completion bonus of up to $1000, and with tips added, we estimate first season guides will average $18/hr over the course of the season.

Guides also have free personal use of equipment and access to our employee equipment purchase program offering up to 50% off retail prices on boats and other gear.

Position dates

Our trips start mid-May with free skills trainings being offered throughout the month. New staff training starts after Memorial Day. We give hiring preference to those who can stay at least through Labor Day, though flexibility with ending date is possible. Staff staying into September can expect laid-back shoulder season work with opportunities for taking personal trips.

To Apply

Positions are open until filled. Our goal is to have all positions filled by March 1st. Now looking for guides for 2022.