Trip Leader

This job has been Expired
Backcountry Unlimited
Job Overview


Backcountry Unlimited is a professional, permitted and insured Adventure Travel Company committed to providing our customers with amazing adventures that exceed their expectations. Backcountry Unlimited employees are true outdoor professionals who are trained and certified in the highest levels of first aid, CPR, lifeguard, Leave No Trace, Wilderness Medicine and group dynamics.

Our program participants reflect the diversity within our communities and we value the same on our staff. Whether you’re an urbanite or mountain (wo)man, from the East Coast, West Coast, North Pole or Mars, you’ll fit right in. Though we come from all sorts of places, what bonds the Backcountry Unlimited family is our deep commitment to providing unsurpassed adventure based outdoor education programs.


As we drive towards achieving our goals, Backcountry Unlimited is excited to seek Trip Leaders who will be a positive inspirational influence for our participants. Trip leaders must be devoted to supporting growth and education throughout the trip while creating a safe, fun, and non-competitive environment in which participants thrive.  Our leaders participate in a wide variety of activities such as mountaineering, backpacking in remote areas, rock climbing, sea kayaking, whitewater rafting, canyoneering and cultural exchanges.  Experience in these activities is helpful, but not required.  Other leader responsibilities include supervision of meal planning, travel logistics, daily expedition logs, management of trip funds, facilitation of activities, games and enriching evening circles, overseeing subcontracted activities, communicating with office staff and being an ambassador of Backcountry Unlimited always by upholding an extremely professional demeanor.


  • High energy, good judgement and decision-making skills
  • 21 years old by June of your application year
  • College graduate, or in the process of completing a degree
  • Proven successful leadership experience
  • Applicants must have and maintain an excellent driving record with no major infractions of unsafe conduct.  You will be required to drive a 15-passenger van towing an 8-foot utility trailer.
  • Background check which shows a clean and clear record
  • First aid and adult CPR certification before training (Wilderness First Responder preferred)
  • Lifeguard Training (Preferred) is required for second year employees
  • Available to work the entire duration of contract


**Note Certifications may be earned after hiring but before training begins***


Salary: $540-$720 per week (DOE)

Leaders are contracted to lead two to three trips ranging from two to four weeks in duration. All program expenses will be paid for while working for Backcountry Unlimited (transportation, all accommodations, meals and activities). Backcountry Unlimited offers pro-deals and industry discounts from many well-known manufacturers to our leaders. Backcountry Unlimited does not provide flights to training (Prescott, AZ) or “home” after employment.


Backcountry Unlimited only hires highly qualified individuals who have a passion for leading groups on unforgettable adventures. You must have the desire and experience to provide a safe, fun, educational environment for our participants. Our trips range between 5 & 12 days in length, and require emotional, mental, and physical maturity to effectively lead them. Due to the nature of our trips you must be flexible and dynamic, while remaining professional, motivated, and enthusiastic. Backcountry Unlimited leaders are responsible for supervising all aspects of meal planning, driving 15-passenger vans with a trailer, teaching natural history and ecology about the areas you travel through, facilitating evening enrichment programs, effectively communicating with administration, vendors, parents, and making the group experience a once in a lifetime experience.



Our Teen Adventure season begins in Prescott, Arizona with staff training in the end of May. Backcountry Unlimited provides an airport shuttle for those arriving by plane. Although all Backcountry Unlimited leaders are rich with skills built over a lifetime, Backcountry Unlimited staff training offers a new and challenging course in youth leadership. A portion of this training is spent in small groups in a backcountry setting designed to model a Backcountry Unlimited trip. Next, as a large group, we will come together to discuss Backcountry Unlimited policies and procedures. During this time, staff members will meet with their regional directors to plan for their upcoming trips. Rest assured, staff training will leave you well-prepared for your employment as a Backcountry Unlimited leader. The Backcountry Unlimited team uses training to teach and assess skills, so our employees are fully ready for the complex and demanding task of leading youth on inspiring adventures. Summer employment contracts end in the beginning of August ​


All trips include one male and one female trip leader who are at least 21 years old. Our hiring process is competitive, resulting in what we believe to be the most professional, safe and experienced leaders in the industry. We conduct an in-depth interview; check references and do an extensive background check of all potential trip leaders. Organizational skills, sense of humor, and an ability to teach teenagers about leadership and adventure travel are the qualities we value most.

The clear majority of teens who join Backcountry Unlimited respect necessary limits. Backcountry Unlimited is NOT designed to correct behavior, but instead to be a haven of enthusiasm, respect, trust and responsibility. Disrespectful behavior requiring extensive attention or breaking the law will result in dismissal. We are happy to send you a copy of our Participant Agreement, which clearly defines the boundaries of our community.

Backcountry Unlimited contracts with professional outfitters to join your group for any activities requiring advanced technical skills. However, your oversight and leadership are needed to ensure safety always.

After training leaders head off to their respective corners of the world to meet their teens and start the adventure. Depending on your contract, you may have one, two, three or more trips! Most leaders lead two trips. Between each trip, you will generally have some downtime to prepare for your next trip and enjoy the area you are in. But keep in mind, a summer as a leader is extremely dynamic and full of hard work. Do not expect any traditional “days off”. However, working for Backcountry Unlimited will be as rewarding and incredible as it’s challenging and tiring! After your trips end we will reconnect at the end of the summer back in Prescott, Arizona to share stories and debrief with the administrative staff.


Working for Backcountry Unlimited is a privilege with immense responsibilities. Join a staff that is committed to exceeding the standard for leadership in the adventure travel industry.

Please send resume, cover letter, and list of three professional references to [email protected]. In the subject line of your email please include “Trip Leader” and your last name.