Deer Crossing Camp
Rock-Climbing Instructor

Rock-Climbing Instructor

Deer Crossing Camp
Loon Lake, Eldorado National Forest, in northern California's High Sierra

Share your love of climbing in Northern California's High Sierra

$3,100.00 / season
Start Date:

Who are we? Deer Crossing Camp is an outdoor adventure in California's High Sierra  and offers a unique opportunity for campers and staff alike. Deer Crossing Camp was founded in 1983 on two key principles: (1) through competency comes self-esteem, and (2) great leaders first learn to lead themselves. Classes in outdoor activities and wilderness safety develop competency. Special challenge activities and memorable stories build resiliency and leadership skills in both campers and staff. 

Where are we? Deer Crossing is located at 6400' elevation on Loon Lake in the Eldorado National Forest. At our back door is beautiful Desolation Wilderness with 100+ lakes and numerous destinations to explore. There is no road into camp; campers hike in 2-1/2 miles and all supplies and gear are boated in. It is a true wilderness, off-the-grid living experience, with limited access to the Internet and no cell phone reception. We are a small camp, with up to 55 campers at a time--one big, happy, adventurous family! 

What do we do? Our program teaches campers ages 8-17 water-based (sailing, canoeing, kayaking, windsurfing) and land-based (rock climbing, technical tree climbing, archery, backpacking, arts and crafts, improv comedy, guitar) activities. Leadership programs for qualified teens ages 14–17 include basic Counselor-in-Training and advanced Leader- and Guide-in-Training. Class sizes are small, usually 3-8 campers, depending on the activity. American Camp Association accredited.

Who do we hire? Deer Crossing Camp attracts staff who are outgoing and energetic with a love for wilderness living and providing children with opportunities to learn and grow in an atmosphere of adventure and fun. Each staff member fills two roles: activity instructor and general counselor. We are looking for experienced people who can teach rock-climbing. Each rock-climbing instructor must have a solid, advanced-level foundation on real rock (vs climbing walls)--represented by 100+ hours of experience in:

  • Setting top-rope protection without bolts already being in place
  • Setting cams, nuts, chocks, doing wraps on boulder/trees, etc
  • Setting up self-equalizing anchor systems, such as cordelettes
  • Belaying on real rock
  • Lead climbing and/or cleaning wall after lead climber
  • Rock rescue
  • Climbing at 5.7+ on Yosemite rating system

Rock Instructors may also have the opportunity to learn to teach technical tree-climbing. All staff must have strong swimming skills and if not already certified lifeguards, must be capable of being certified during staff training. Backpacking experience a major plus. We look for staff who are outgoing and friendly, high energy, adventurous, helpful, caring and thoughtful, willing to help with camp chores and maintenance, and capable of following the rules of our wilderness facility. 

Where do staff live? Staff sleep in platform tents (with mattresses) near the lodge, scattered among camper tents. Meals are served in the lodge overlooking the lake. Separate staff and camper bathrooms with hot showers are located in the lodge. Wifi Internet access is available for staff use several times each week.

What are staff paid? Base pay is $3,100, for 9-1/2 weeks of staff training and camp. Pay increases $200 with Wilderness First Responder (WFR) or EMT certification valid through 8/12/17. All staff are certified in Wilderness First Aid (if not already WFR or EMT certified) and American Red Cross Lifeguard/First Aid/Professional CPR during staff training. Staff receive one 24-hour day off each week. Staff are paid every two weeks, at the end of each camp session. No smoking of any type, no recreational drugs (whether legal or illegal), no drinking.

How to Apply

If you're looking to teach young campers the joy of climbing in a beautiful wilderness location, complete and submit the online application. We will get back to you!