Roles of Camp Crew

The Camp Crew consists of a Camp Assistant and Camp Chef who work together to set up camp, cook and actualize the world-class camping experience we promise to our guests. To be successful you must demonstrate a strong work ethic, positive attitude, desire to serve, attention to detail, self-sufficiency, initiative, time-management, organization, clear communication skills and enthusiasm.

Camp Crew are vital to the success of the trip. The way they connect with guests and make them feel comfortable in a home away from home enhances their experience greatly.

Camp Crew Job Description, Pay & Benefits

Camp Assistants
As a Camp Assistant (CA), you will ensure we provide our guests a deluxe camping experience by maximizing their comfort and relaxation while exceeding their camping expectations. As a CA, you create a welcoming, comfortable and clean "home" at the campsite and and are the point person for anything guests need for a better camping experience. You're expected to set up as many as 10-15 tents on your own, assist in loading and unloading large pieces of luggage on a daily basis, hauling water and firewood, and helping with other general tasks as assigned. CAs also become the prep chef, helping the Camp Chef to prepare delicious and nutritious breakfasts and dinners. CAs are not responsible for Trip Logistics and do not participate in the daily activities with guests (these are led by the Trip Leaders). However, they still get to know and have fun with guests throughout the week and are a valuable part of the guests' experience.

Camp Chefs
As a Camp Chef (CC) you serve guests by preparing delicious, creative, regionally inspired and healthy meals for breakfast and dinner. The Camp Chef coordinates the “kitchen” and is the point person for anything the guests might need in regards to meals. Not a cook? Don’t worry, there is no kitchen experience required (we’ll teach you everything in training!). The Camp Chef role is very autonomous and creative. CCs are not responsible for Trip Logistics and do not participate in the daily activities with guests (these are led by the Trip Leaders). However, CCs connect deeply with guests at camp as they marvel at the wonderful gourmet meals that seem effortlessly created in the outdoors.

Other Roles of Camp Crew:
As Camp Crew, you may work some weeks as a Camp Assistant and some weeks as a Camp Chef. Although the Camp Crew works in tandem, and often helps each other out, you'll work as one or the other each week. Camp Crew are paid for a variety of additional types of work, which can increase earning potential and help round out your season. They include:

  • Backroads Leadership Training Program
  • Traveling to/from scheduled regions
  • Staff meetings
  • Loading equipment, driving vans/trailers from one of our hubs to a trip start destination on a "unit drive"
  • Working a "prep day," one day prior to the trip start, to prepare for the trip
  • Repairing or maintaining equipment during the season
  • Repairing, cleaning and storing equipment at the end of the season

How do we hire Camp Crew?
Camp Crew and Trip Leader applicants complete the same hiring process. For the last few years, we've hired Camp Crew from our Trip Leader applicant pool at Hiring Events. Historically, working on the Camp Crew has been a good stepping stone for those that show in interest and potential in the Trip Leader role. Over the years, we've seen many Camp Crew grow into the Trip Leader role (and beyond!) and be some of the strongest new leaders in the company! We’re also hiring specifically for Camp Crew so if this role is more up your alley, please specify when ranking the positions on the application.

Only applicants authorized to work in the United States and Canada can be hired as Camp Crew. Because we do not run Camping Trips in Europe, we do not have European Camp Crew.

The following list of qualifications serves as our guide for exceptional Camp Crew candidates. You'll see that we have very high expectations of our Camp Crew—and so do our guests!

  • Enjoys and thrives working in a team
  • Has a desire to serve others and connect on a genuine level
  • Hard working and a self-starter. Takes initiative and pride in a job well done
  • Comfortable with physical work, long days and being in the outdoors
  • Positive attitude, enjoys inspiring and motivating others
  • Well rounded (active, perceptive, organized, fun, compassionate, tough)
  • An exceptional communicator who is eager to grow as a person and a professional

Schedules/Quantity of Work
Camp Crew schedules available in the United States are: Glacier National Park, Yellowstone/Tetons National Parks, Bryce/Zion/Grand Canyon National Parks, and the California Redwoods. In Canada: Banff and Jasper National Parks. First year Camp Crew typically work in 1 - 2 different regions throughout the season.

In 2019, first-year Camp Crew worked an average of 106 days throughout their season (June - October): seven weeks were working as Camp Crew and three weeks as a Support Leader (see below). The other days were comprised of traveling, driving, learning a new region, equipment maintenance and organization. Being available for work July–September is required of Camp Crew.

Canadian Camp Crew, please note: If you are hired to work as Camp Crew in Canada, the Canadian season reflects our trip sales and does not begin until late June or early July, and will end in mid-late August. Thus, there will likely be a 3.5 – 5 week gap between training and field entry. On average, Camp Crew can expect about 51 days (6-7 trips) of work during this time period.

Pay & Gratuities
Camp Crew receive a competitive hourly rate of pay plus a share in tips from guests. Camp Assistants and Camp Chefs are paid the same rate and receive the same amount of gratuities. Detailed information about the compensation will be provided during the interview stage of our hiring process.

Allowances & Housing
While on trip working as Camp Crew, food is provided. Food allowances are provided for prep days, travel days, drive days and regional familiarization days.

Lodging is provided while working as Camp Crew on trip at the same campsite as the guests and Trip Leaders. Communal housing is provided between trips, so Camp Crew will not incur any out-of-pocket expenses for lodging during a season of work. Many of our regions in North America have Staff Houses in wonderful places that are available free of charge while working, and in between trips. Standard with these accommodations are computers, wireless internet and access to bikes for personal use.

United States: Jackson Hole, WY; Whitefish, MY; St. George, UT; Berkeley, CA

Canada: Canmore, AB; Nova Scotia, NS; Quebec, QB.

Backroads provides all work-related travel throughout the course of the season. Travel to your starting hub (Salt Lake City, Utah or Canmore, Alberta) at the beginning of the season and to your home at the end of the season is your responsibility. Camp Crew enjoy keeping their own frequent flyer miles for personal travel, and may choose to stopover or extend their stay in desired locales within work-sponsored itineraries.

Recreational Benefits
Backroads offers several benefits to Camp Crew that are of a more recreational nature, including generous discounts with brand-name equipment and clothing companies; Backroads-labeled gear (items vary each year); Backroads trip discounts for family and friends and our favorite: Staff Ride. All Field Staff in their second season and beyond are invited to our annual Staff Ride (our version of the company picnic). Staff Ride is an all-inclusive multi-day bike trip held in a different destination each year such as: Vietnam, California, Greece, Thailand, Italy, Spain, Slovenia, etc. And of course, don't forget the built-in perk, living and working in US and Canadian National Park settings during the summer is a lifestyle beyond compare!

Additional Benefits
Camp Crew employed by Backroads Utah enjoy these benefits:

  • 401k Plan: Camp Crew are eligible to contribute (up to 75% of their income) to a 401k plan after six months of employment, and Backroads will match 20% of an employee's contributions (up to 15% of pay). Employees become 20% vested in the employer match each year and are fully vested after five years of employment.
  • Medical, Dental & Vision Insurance: Backroads provides group medical, dental and vision insurance eligibility based on a field staff member's status to seasonal field staff with extended seasonal status who work longer than six months are eligible on the first day of the month following their one-year anniversary if they work 1560 hours or more in their first 12 months of employment (or 1560 or more hours during the previous calendar year in subsequent years of employment).
  • Flex Plan: Camp Crew are also eligible to join our "Flex Plan" after three months of employment. This plan allows employees to set aside money on a pre-tax basis to pay for qualifying health and dependent daycare expenses.
  • Workers Compensation Coverage: In the unfortunate event of a work-related injury, all Backroads Camp Crew are covered by workers compensation insurance which provides coverage for medical care, disability pay, and medically necessary transportation costs.

Camp Crew employed by our Canadian subsidiary enjoy these benefits:

  • RRSP Plan: Backroads will provide 20% match on Camp Crew RRSP contributions made during the year, up to a maximum of 15% of a Camp Crew Backroads salary. Employees become 20% vested each year and are fully vested after five years of employment.
  • Health/Dental Insurance Program: Backroads will reimburse up to $150 CAD per month for provincial medical and/or supplemental medical insurance beginning the first day of the month following the first day of training. Camp Crew are eligible to receive this reimbursement during months in which they work 10 days or more.
  • Holiday Pay: Canadian Camp Crew receive paid holidays in accordance with Canadian Labour Code.
  • Vacation Pay: Canadian Camp Crew receive vacation pay at the rate of 4% of pay for employees who have been with the company for one to five years, and 6% of pay for employees who have been with the company for more than five years.
  • Workers Compensation Coverage: In the unfortunate event of a work-related injury all Canadian Backroads Camp Crew are covered by a combination of workers compensation insurance and employer paid travel medical plans (when working outside of Canada) which provides coverage for medical care, disability pay and medically necessary transportation costs.
  • Joie de Vivre: Perhaps the most valuable benefit is enjoying a lifestyle few can match. In addition to itineraries that feature some of the worlds' best scenery, imagine having time off in some of the most desirable locations around the world, and having the freedom to explore on your own. Being a Backroads Camp Crew allows for a lifestyle of flexibility and variety that many value above all other benefits of the job.

The Hiring & Training Process

Camp Crew applicants go through the same hiring process as Trip Leader applicants (see: Hiring & Training Process) After the Hiring Event we will contact you via email or phone to let you know our decision. If hired, you will be invited to attend the Camp Crew Training Program in Salt Lake City in late May 2020. You will enter the field 1 - 14* days after your training graduation (*3.5 - 5 weeks for Canadians. Please see "Schedules and Quantity of Work" above for more details) 

The Camp Crew Training Program focuses on the essential skills required to be a successful member of our Camp Crew: guest service, problem solving, food preparation, camp equipment set up and overview, trailer maneuvering, internal systems, etc. This week-long training includes a four-day "Mock Trip" when new Camp Crew camp together and model a typical Backroads camping experience.

Additional Training
Select Camp Crew may be invited back to Salt Lake City for an additional week of Support Leader Training in late August. After this training, Camp Crew may re-enter the field as Support Leaders to finish out the Fall season and gain more leadership skills and experience.

 Frequently Asked Questions


As a Camp Crew, will I always be "sleeping under the stars"?

Only if you want to! On a Camping Trip, you may choose to either sleep in a private tent or literally "under the stars." In between trips, Camp Crew have access to regional "leader houses" (housing provided by Backroads for

How long are Camp Crew in the field?

Most Camping Trips run for five days and then Camp Crew go back to their regional hub to stay in a leader house for two nights before starting another trip. You may also have a full week off between trips, allowing you to explore the region where you're working.

Can I be a Camp Crew if I'm only available in July and August?

Our peak camping season is mid-June through the end of August but also includes a key event in mid-September. Applicants must be available through the end of September.

How many Camp Crew members are on a trip?

There are two or three Camp Crew members on each trip (depending on guest enrollment). There is one Camp Assistant (or two) and one Camp Chef. The Camp Crew works closely together, as well as with the Trip Leaders.

Where are the camps located? Are they remote, backcountry spots?

No. They are fully serviced campgrounds complete with stores to buy firewood, water spigots and restrooms that usually include hot showers. We also bring in a lot of equipment to make the camping experience comfortable for our guests. Because of this, you can expect to frequently pack and unpack a full trailer of high-end camping equipment including tents, tarps, cots, camp chairs, sleeping bags and pads.

How should I pack? Do I need to bring camping equipment?

If you're hired, we'll send you a complete packing list. Backroads provides high-quality camping equipment. You'll need to pack enough clothing for a week, including good cold weather gear and clothing suitable for outdoor work. You'll have access to laundry facilities each week to prepare for your next trip. Often, Camp Crew will bring their own lightweight camping equipment for adventures in the backcountry during their time off.

Will I get any time off during trips? Between trips?

When you're working on a trip, time off can be scarce. A lofty goal is to finish your daily tasks early to enjoy a hike or relax in the surrounding area. You'll have full weeks off between trips to rejuvenate and tour a region with the insider knowledge to explore the best the location has to offer.