South Lake Tahoe Interagency Wilderness Ranger Academy

The USFS Region 5 and BLM California Interagency Wilderness Ranger Academy (WRA) will take place in South Lake Tahoe, from June 5 to June 9, 2017.  

The WRA trains Wilderness Rangers and other Wilderness field staff in Wilderness-specific skills.  Training begins with the exploration of the Wilderness Act, and culminates with traditional skills certifications.  See below for important information and the registration link.  SEE A DRAFT AGENDA HERE. 

First Year Rangers and Returning Rangers - The agenda is split into two tracks - one for first year rangers, and one for returning rangers. The first year ranger track is designed to provide incoming field staff with bedrock knowledge needed to work in Wilderness.  The returning ranger track is desigend to engage returning field staff in more in-depth topics to build on bedrock skills.   Identify whether you are new or returning during the registration process.  

Certifications - The WRA provides five certifications: Stock Orientation, Crosscut Saw, Wilderness First Aid or Wilderness First Responder Refresher, Leave No Trace Trainer, and Map, Compass and GPS.  All certifications are two day classes.  During the registration process, you will be asked whether you would like to attend a certification, and if so, to rank your preferences.  We are not able to give everyone their first preference.  We strive to give you your first or second preference, and will alert you of your certification assignment two weeks after registration closes.  CLICK HERE FOR A LIST OF CERTIFICATION ASSIGNMENTS.  (Certification list last updated May 31, at 12:00 pm Pacific Time).

Assistant Instructing - We are looking for returning rangers to help with instruction for a number of classes.  Below are the courses available to assist, along with desired qualifications for assistant instructors.  Please let us know if you would like to be an assistant instructor, and for which course(s), during the registration process.  

Backpack and Ranger Skills - Skills required to teach the base preparedness classes are acquired through rangering, backcountry trail crews, volunteer leading, and many other capacities.  Assistant instructors should have at least one season of such work.  

Visitor Contact Scenarios - We will need multiple assistants for Visitor Contact Scenarios.  If you have previous experience with Visitor Contact, and enjoy acting out scenarios, we would love to have your help.

Leave No Trace Trainer - Assistant trainers for LNT should have some level of LNT certification, as well as an interest in teaching this subject. This course will include backcountry travel.  

Stock Orientation - Assistant instructors should have extensive experience with stock management.

Crosscut Saw - There are many ways you could assist with the crosscut saw certification course. If you are interested in being an instructor, you must hold a current certification at the C-bucking level or above, as well as first aid, CPR and blood borne pathogens training. Experienced B sawyers are also needed to assist crosscut instructors in the field portion of the course, and it’s a great way to develop your teaching skills and work towards your C-certification.

Map, Compass & GPS - The Map, Compass & GPS class will delve deeply into each topic.  In previous years, this has been a one-hour course. It was extended into a 2-day certification to allow for a much more in-depth view of navigation components, and practice with each.  We will need multiple GPS instructors, so that trainers can work closely with a few individuals.  This course will include backcounry travel.

Accommodations - Accommodations are provided via campsite free of charge during the Academy.  During registration, please let us know if you will need a campsite set aside for you. A list of what to bring and what camp space you are assigned will be sent two weeks after registration closes.

Parking - Each campsite holds five people, but parking is limited.  Please carpool when possible, and note that if you bring a car it may not always be immediately accessible.  


Registering Vacant Positions - You may register staff to come to training that you have not yet hired.  In the event that you do not have a name for a registrant, please state "TBD" for first name and your office name (ex: "Arcata FO") as the last name.  If you are registering multiple unnamed staff, please add a number after the office name.  For instance: TBD Arcata FO 1, TBD Arcata FO 2, etc.  

If you have any questions, please contact Heather MacSlarrow, 406-212-5464 or Togan Capozza, 707-562-8765  to discuss options.  

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The Society for Wilderness Stewardship is a non-profit, charitable organization under the 501 (c)(3) section of the Internal Revenue Code.