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Forestry Technician - CA National Forests (USFS)

The Great Basin Institute
Job Field:
Job Type:
Seasonal, Temporary, Internship
Location Detail:
Tahoe, CA
Job Description:

The Great Basin Institute, in cooperation with the USFS, is recruiting Forestry Technicians to perform timber sale-preparation, vegetation management and restoration projects in the Sierra Nevada region. These projects all serve the Basin & Range Forestry program’s greater mission of helping the USFS in their critical goal of improving forest resilience in the face of worsening climate conditions and increased wildfire threats. Forestry Technician work will directly improve the quality of these forests helping ensure they continue to thrive for generations to come. Technicians will serve vegetation management and fuels reduction efforts, supporting initiatives for healthy, productive, and resilient forest landscapes and resources. Project work may include post fire recovery efforts.

Forestry Technicians will perform a wide variety of activities to support all stages of project work. Forestry duties may include, but are not limited to:

Timber sale unit boundary delineation and layout (GPSing, flagging, painting);

Tree species identification;

Green and salvage timber marking and cruising;

Timber and biomass plot cruising;

Collection of stand examination data;

General silviculture data collection;

and Identification of various resource concerns including hydrology, heritage, wildlife and recreation.

All procedures will be performed in compliance with silvicultural prescriptions based on forest and treatment type and land management goals. Data will be gathered using standard instruments, direct measurements, general observations and on-site inspections. Project-specific training will be provided on tree-species identification, GPS data collection, tree marking, hydrology, entomology/pathology, heritage, fire/fuels and other elements.

Contract Timeline:

- Tentatively: May – November

- Projects are weather dependent, therefore start and end dates vary according to local conditions and individual project needs


Forestry Technician positions are open across many National Forests in various locations. Position locations include the following National Forests and Management Units: Tahoe, Sequoia, Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, Eldorado, Lassen, Plumas, Klamath, Mendocino, Stanislaus, Sierra.

Preferred location placement is not guaranteed and final placement will be dependent on the various needs of the National Forests.


At least one of the following:

Bachelor’s degree from an accredited university in forestry (preferred), natural resource management or related field, with coursework and experience that demonstrates an understanding of the principles of forestry; OR

Six months of professional fieldwork experience.


Capacity to collect and maintain field data in an organized manner that is easily understood and accessible to other resources staff;

Ability to communicate effectively, both written and orally, with a diverse audience;

Ability to navigate and collect data using handheld GPS units;

Experience using a compass and topographic map to navigate;

Possess a clean, valid, state-issued driver’s license;

Ability to live and work in rural and remote field and office setting; and

Physically fit to work outdoors, carry up to 50 pounds of personal and/or field equipment, and withstand the rigors of a forested and/or high desert environment in all seasons.


Familiarity with cruising and marking techniques;

Familiarity with, and interest in, resource management issues of western states and the ecology of the Sierra Nevada ecoregion;

Familiarity with the mixed conifer forests typical of eastern California, including common plants (woody and herbaceous), wildlife, geology and topography;

Ability to safely operate and maintain a 4WD vehicle on and off paved roads;

Ability to understand, implement and adhere to established data collection, inventory, assessment and monitoring protocols; and

Experience using ArcGIS to create maps, GPS data collection, tree-species identification, timber marking and cruising, identifying hydrologic concerns, recognizing forest entomology/pathology issues, identifying heritage sites and experience with fire/fuels assessments or related field tasks.


The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable employees with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit, use hands, stand, walk, bend, and have specific vision abilities to include close and distance vision, and ability to adjust focus working with computer business equipment and other job/industry specific equipment. The noise level in the work environment is usually low.

The overall nature of the position is sedentary, requiring little physical effort and occasional light exertion. There is occasional exposure to environmental conditions such as heat, cold, and temperature changes



$21/hour with overtime at 1.5x hourly rate. Full time, average 40 hours per week


- Health, dental, vision Insurance premiums covered 100% by GBI (equivalent to approximately $350/month); health, dental and vision insurance is available on the first day of the month following the start of employment

- Shared housing provided (equivalent to approximately $1000/month); housing stipend not provided if shared housing is denied by employee

- Camping per diem: $15/night as necessary (infrequent)

- Uniform Stipend

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