We’re Hiring! – Trail Technician (CLOSED)

Founded in 1990, Laguna Canyon Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving and protecting the South Coast Wilderness, a 22,000-acre network of open space surrounding Laguna Beach in Orange County, California which is on traditional lands of the Tongva and Acjachemen peoples.

We acquire open space to add to the system of protected lands that make up the South Coast Wilderness, offer education programs for school children and the general public, maintain and improve trails, restore habitat and conduct other land management activities throughout the South Coast Wilderness.

LCF is an equal opportunity employer and encourages BIPOC candidates, those identifying as LGBTQIA+ and other people from groups traditionally underrepresented in the environmental field to apply.

Position Summary:

The trail technician will report to the trails project manager and will work closely with others on the Laguna Canyon Foundation (LCF) staff, volunteers, land managers, and partners to implement a variety of trail-based projects. The technician will primarily conduct trail work and be considered part of LCF’s trails program but will periodically assist the conservation program. Typical work weeks are Monday – Friday or Tuesday – Saturday, 7:00am to 3:30 pm. Occasionally the trail technician will be asked to work evenings or overtime.

This position is field-based and requires extensive physical labor in adverse conditions and difficult terrain, including but not limited to working with hand tools, digging, bending, kneeling, moving large objects, using power tools and motorized equipment including string trimmers, angle grinders, brush cutters, augers, and a motorized wheelbarrow. The ideal candidate will have experience working on field-based projects, be a strong problem solver who is comfortable using an adaptive work management style, have a proven track record working both independently and as a team member, be dependable, self-motivated, and have a positive attitude.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Assisting in leading trail volunteer events.
  • Conducting trail maintenance, including but not limited to drainage work, tread improvement, rock armoring, improving trail features, creating retaining walls, naturalizing, planting, seeding, and installing straw wattles.
  • Tool maintenance, including sharpening, maintaining, cleaning, and organizing inventory.
  • Conducting trail assessments, including utilizing GIS based phone applications to record and gather data on trail accomplishments and issues.
  • Attending trail meetings, events, and gatherings if needed.
  • Various janitorial duties to ensure workspaces and equipment sheds are kept clean and organized.
  • Installing, monitoring, and maintaining irrigation systems.
  • Assisting with vegetation and wildlife monitoring activities.
  • Restoring native habitat through a combination of planting and seeding.
  • Preferably, willingness to assist conservation department in herbicide application.
  • Other tasks as assigned.

Essential functions:

  • Constantly works outdoors in a wide range of weather conditions.
  • Constantly grips and manipulates hand tools such as shovels, mattocks, cultivators, loppers, hoes, hammers, etc.
  • Constantly exchanges information both verbally and in written form with supervisor, co-workers, and others.
  • Constantly traverses off-trail over rough terrain and steep slopes, sometimes through thick vegetation.
  • Frequently lifts and carries loads up to 25 pounds and occasionally lifts loads to 50 pounds.
  • Frequently positions self-close to the ground to pull weeds, fix irrigation lines, etc.
  • Frequently uses motorized equipment such as string trimmers, brush cutters, augers, and motorized wheelbarrow.
  • Frequently drives personal and work vehicles.
  • Remains in a stationary position for up to 30% of the time.

Position Requirements:

  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively and efficiently, both independently and as a productive team member.
  • Access to a reliable vehicle, valid driver’s license and required insurance coverage, and willingness to use the vehicle for work purposes (mileage reimbursement available).
  • Experience performing physically demanding field work in adverse weather conditions and difficult terrain.
  • Punctual.
  • Excellent interpersonal communication skills, time management skills, and organizational abilities.
  • Ability and willingness to work occasional weekend hours and evening hours as necessary.
  • Highly motivated and a proven self-starter.
  • Willingness and ability to learn about and identify local native and non-native plants.
  • Enthusiasm for trail work and the natural world.
  • Passion for Laguna Canyon Foundation’s mission.
  • CPR/First Aid certification (which LCF will offer as part of the onboarding).
  • Fingerprinting for background checks may be required.
  • Over 18 years old.
  • COVID vaccination is required (with medical and religious exemptions as required by law).

The ideal candidate may also have:

  • Experience in trail work.
  • Experience using handheld power tools (e.g., weed trimmers, brush cutters, chainsaws).
  • Experience implementing habitat restoration activities.
  • Experience with herbicide application in a conservation setting.
  • Experience assisting at volunteer events.

Hiring Details:

  • Position starts $19 per hour based on qualifications and experience.
  • This is a full-time seasonal position starting 10/16/23 and ending 07/01/2024.
  • To apply, please send your resume and cover letter to Antonio Valdes at antonio@lagunacanyon.org