‘Backcounty ski guide’ not included | Photo: Barclay Idsal | Cover Photo: Andrew Taylor via Vail Facebook Page
The job market in a ski town can be a tough river to navigate. There’s eddy’s filled with different kinds of booze. There’s private land on both sides of the river you can’t afford. And that strainer in the midst of the current is a classifieds section full of occupations in the shoveling shit industry.

Related: Where Are They Now? | Those Ski Bum Friends From Your 20’s

What’s a ski bum tired of working nights 7-days a week to do? Get a new job and stop living like an animal– that’s what. So if you’re ready to swap in that Monday morning shred off for a Netflix and chill with bae that same night after night– after night– here’s a few available directions with which to take your limited skill set.

Ski Area Marketing Specialist 

Perks: Drop ropes first, get footy for the boys, take athletes and journalists out for beers– constantly.

Drawbacks: Once you get early chair access, you’ll never appreciate first chair again.

Job Summary: Basically all you have to do is go ski and shoot powder an hour before everybody else, post those shots to Instagram, and watch the lift lines fill up.

Oil and Gas Technician

“Digging a hole” | Photo: Bureau of Land Management
Perks: Two weeks on, two weeks off

Drawbacks: Two weeks on, two weeks off. Gas-field gonorrhea.

Job Summary: Fly back to North Dakota for two weeks as a welder on an oil and gas well and you’ll have just enough money for a snowmobile and all the repairs it’ll require by season’s end.

DUI Lawyer

It’s a sign! | Photo: Wesley Fryer
Perks: You can represent yourself after getting a DUI.

Drawbacks: Ski town antics will ultimately lead to most mountain-based attorneys getting disbarred.

Job Summary: Represent your buddy and his 12 friends as they stand trial for a crime they should have learned to avoid by now. Still, 10k per case ain’t a bad living.

Park Ranger

The smile says it all | Photo: Mount Rainier National Park
Perks: Access to ‘ranger-only’ cabins. Never pay for backcountry permits.

Drawbacks: The dorky uniform. Having to deal with people who feel the need to put baby bison in the trunk of their car.

Job Summary: Park Rangers can expect to have a lot to learn during their first year. The hardest part of the job is corralling swaths of narcissistic animals disguised as humans who won’t stop taking selfies with bears and bison.

Fireman + Search And Rescue

“Is that a carabiner on your harness or are you happy to see me?” | Photo: North Shore Rescue
Perks: Fly in a helicopter. Drive a firetruck. Save people, hug parents.

Drawbacks: Seems as though these folks haven’t had a day off since they started. High Risk. Working in the GoPro era.

Job Summary: Depending on the size of the town, a fireman might also be required to serve as the leader of the local search and rescue team in addition to covering Colin as the late night bartender once a week.

Physical Therapist

He’s likely saying something nobody but himself understands | Photo: Tom Britt
Perks: Free PT. Chicks dig it. Dudes dig it.

Drawbacks: Touching old people. Clients farting during bodily manipulations.

Job Summary: The Physical Therapist might as well be the mayor of any ski town and as such he or she keeps the town up and running– literally. For that reason the PT benefits from free food, drinks, gear hookups, you name it…

Wells Fargo Bank Teller

‘Customer rewards’ really means ‘customer exploitation’ | Photo: Mike Mozart
Perks: None

Drawbacks: Many

Job Summary: Spend all day managing ski bum overdraft complaints and never get to call in ‘sick’ ever again. Avoid this job at all cost and don’t be fooled by their benefits package– It’s never worth it.

Private Real Estate Agent

Those views are gonna cost ya | Photo: Mark Moz
Perks: Pro deals on real estate? That’s a thing right?

Drawbacks: Rash from polyester blend polo shirt. Friends get annoyed when you won’t stop asking, “are your folks looking for a place out here?” 

Job Summary: The ski town real estate agent makes a living hounding people about ‘real estate opportunities’ in the area. 99% of the time, the people they speak with are not in the mood to buy. That said, if you get 1 out of every 100 potential buyers, the year is taken care of… financially speaking.

*This is a work of satire

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