Unless your name is Bear Grylls, the idea of finding a way to pay your bills while indulging your love of the outdoors and avoiding the 9-to-5 desk job grind can be an uphill climb (pun intended). If you’ve always preferred being out in the elements to a climate-controlled office, don’t despair—there are some career paths you might want to consider.
If you’re one of those people on the street who does, in fact, find the time to stop and talk about the environment, you might want to consider working for a company or agency that works for conservation. Per the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for environmental scientists and specialists is expected to grow by 11% over the next eight years.
You might think of geology of being as fun as a box of…well, rocks, but that’s just a stereotype. In reality, it’s a varied career path that can include studying the earth (soil, water, and minerals) and atmosphere, weather, Earth’s relationship to the rest of the solar system, geochemistry, geophysics, and many other specialties. Think of it as getting to work in the world’s biggest lab.
3. Park/Forest Ranger
Think of this job as being nature’s bouncer. You’re responsible for taking care of incredible natural environments (beaches, parks, deserts, woodlands) and helping to educate people about the wonders of the land and why it should be preserved.
This one isn’t all slow-motion Baywatch drama—if you’re a lifeguard, you’re entrusted with the lives and safety of everyone visiting your beach, pool, or other body of water. If you’ve got eagle eyes and the quick instincts of a mama bear (not to mention the swimming skills of a fish), then this might be your ideal outdoor job.
5. Ski/Snowboard Instructor
Not all outdoor jobs are in warm, green, or beachy spots—we haven’t forgotten you, cold weather fans! This is more of a seasonal gig (not many people signing up for ski lessons in July), but if you have a warm parka, the downhill skills, and the desire to teach people to overcome their fear of the bunny slope and conquer the mountain, this can be a great career path for you.