We are currently hiring trail crew leaders and crew members for our 2023 season!
The Performance Trail Crew Program provides paid, summer-long employment to the next generation of trail stewards.
Working in four to eight person teams, crew members hone their trail maintenance and construction skills and develop outdoor leadership skills all while camping out under the stars in national parks, national forests, and other scenic public lands along the Pacific Northwest Trail.
Unplugging to Connect with the Outdoors
The PNT spans 1,200 miles across some of the wildest and most remote areas in the lower ‘48. On a typical backcountry hitch, our Performance Trail Crews will spend up to ten days at a time backpacking and working out in the wilderness to service all of these hard to reach places.
The experience provides crew members with a rare opportunity to take a break from life as usual, to build things by hand, and to immerse themselves in the natural world, well away from modern distractions.
Building Structures on a Backcountry Trail Crew
Second-year trail crew member, Adam describes what it’s like to build structures and work on a backcountry trail crew with the PNTA.
What it Takes to Log Out the PNT
First-year trail crew member, Mattie shares some her favorite things about working on a PNTA Performance Trail Crew and why she enjoys logging out trails using old fashioned crosscut saws.
The Trail Crew Experience
Alina, a first-year PNTA trail crew member, reflects on her experiences working on a backcountry trail crew on the Bogachiel Trail in Olympic National Park.
From entry level positions for local youth, to leadership positions for professional trail-builders, the Performance Trail Crew program offers opportunities for every aspiring trail leader.
Working in four to eight person teams, trail crew members will hone their trail maintenance and construction skills and develop outdoor leadership skills all while camping out under the stars in national parks, national forests, and other scenic public lands along the 1,200-mile trail corridor.
Trail Crew Member
Performance Trail Crew members are the heart and soul of the association and represent the next generation of outdoor leaders. These trail workers contribute the bulk of the labor needed to maintain and build the Pacific Northwest Trail.
Assistant Crew Leader
With a few years of relevant experience, Assistant Crew Leaders take on a more formal role as outdoor leaders to help shoulder the duties of planning and supervising a crew in the field.
Crew Leaders not only direct the work that happens on the trail, but also oversee behind the scenes planning, provisioning and administrative duties that round out their crew’s success. With the help of the Assistant Crew Leader, they make sure their crew has the information, resources and skills they need to accomplish project objectives while safely living and working outdoors for the workweek.
When the biggest challenges rear their heads, our most experienced crew leaders— Technical Advisors— are ready to supervise the construction of big projects, help cut out the largest logs, and put their extensive leadership experience to work guiding crews to success on the trail and in camp.
Thanks to the generous donors to our Youth Crew Heroes campaign and our corporate partners, REI, Hydroflask, and Six Moon Designs, PNTA has expanded our youth service program, making life changing outdoor experiences available to more participants and getting even more work done on the Pacific Northwest Trail.
Help Outfit our Youth Crews
PNTA is proud to work with corporate partners, like Six Moon Designs, to help minimize the cost of participation in our free youth service program. Please contact us to learn how in-kind product donations can eliminate economic barriers to participation for our youth crew members’ families. With a long list of gear needed to participate, outdoor retailers can help make this life-changing outdoor experience more accessible for all.