Expedition Guide
San Juan Island Outfitters

Humpback Whale

San Juan Outfitters is looking for multi-talented and fun expedition guides for summer 2021

Mountains, islands and a lot of salty water in between.


Expedition Guide

San Juan Island Outfitters
Friday Harbor, Washington
$15.00 / hour + tips
Some experience required
Start Date:
Starts in 2 months. (May 03, 2021)

San Juan Outfitters is a family owned and operated company based in Friday Harbor, Washington on beautiful San Juan Island.  We specialize in guided sea kayaking expeditions, multi-day bicycling and multi-sport trips, wilderness backpacking trips, and guided hiking and camping tours. On all tours, an emphasis is always placed on safety, guest service, and respecting the environment. Our goal is to provide a personal, inspiring, and educational experience to each of our guests to foster a sense of connection with our unique Pacific Northwest ecosystems. Our hope is that our guests will return home with lifelong memories and a new appreciation for the environment. 

In 2021 San Juan Outfitters will hire 32 expedition guides to work from May through mid-September. Guides can expect to lead trips in the Olympic Peninsula, Mt. Rainier, and San Juan Islands.  Our paid trainings will help you get acquainted with these areas as well as operational goals on various itineraries.   

Expedition guides are expected to lead professional, informative tours in a variety of environments in potentially challenging conditions. Guides are involved in all expedition logistics including route planning, food preparation, and equipment in addition to educating guests about local flora/fauna, geology, and natural history. Guides must be outgoing, with excellent communication skills, solid decision-making skills, sound risk management decisions, the ability to thrive in group environments, and exhibit a positive attitude. 

Duties include: 

  • Lead informative and fun backpacking, hiking, biking, and kayak tours 
  • Plan expedition routes based on group expectations, tides, trail and road conditions, and weather 
  • Effectively manage groups while in the field, assessing guest safety and wellbeing 
  • Plan expedition routes based on group expectations, tides, trail and road conditions, and weather 
  • Follow Leave No Trace Principles 
  • Communicate directly with guests about trip goals and expectations, safety issues, weather, equipment usage, and the natural environment 
  • Prepare food for guests in a backcountry setting 
  • Prepare food, equipment, and vehicles prior to expedition departures.  Clean all equipment and vehicles at the end of each trip 


  • Wilderness First Aid and CPR/AED or higher 
  • Washington State Food Handler’s Card (available online) 
  • Must be on San Juan Island by May 3rd and attend paid trainings 
  • Working cell phone

Preferred Skills: 

  • Education background: outdoor education, environmental education, recreation, biology, natural resource management, earth sciences or related field 
  • The confidence/ability to teach one or more of our activities (kayaking, backpacking, natural history, biking, camping) 
  • Catering/restaurant/kitchen experience 
  • Experience driving fifteen passenger vans and/or trailers 
  • Ability to communicate clearly and effectively to guests and co-workers 
  • Good physical fitness: ability to lift 50lbs comfortably and walk on uneven terrain 
  • Leadership experience 


  • Competitive wage DOE 


  • Provided training exceeds industry standards 


  • Opportunity to use the equipment and attend tours on an available basis 
  • Pro-deal access 
  • Opportunity to expand skill-sets across disciplines and a multitude of ecosystem types 
  • Assistance securing housing 
  • Likeminded, fun, dynamic workplace with the best office views in the world 

How to Apply

Please send us a cover letter, updated resume and three professional references.

Contact Info