Well, folks, it’s that time of the year again. Little green sprouts are beginning to pop up through the mud, our favorite trails are slowly drying out once again, and the afternoons linger with that sweet, extra glance of sun. And you know what that means, don’t you?

It means application season for ICL Wilderness Stewards is here! That’s right, we’re searching for outgoing and dedicated, public lands-loving recreationists to volunteer this summer. 

Here’s the skinny:

Wilderness Steward Claudia Sanders on patrol with her pup.

If you cruise the trails of the…

  • Cecil D. Andrus White Clouds Wilderness
  • Craters of the Moon National Monument and Reserve
  • Hemingway-Boulders Wilderness
  • Jim McClure-Jerry Peak Wilderness
  • Salmon-Challis Recommended Wilderness areas
  • Sawtooth Wilderness

At least four or more times between June and November, and you…

  • Have solid backcountry travel and decision-making skills
  • Are over the age of 18 (in some instances, children may be accepted with a parent)
  • Are in good physical condition and able to travel long distances at high elevation
  • Enjoy connecting with fellow trail-goers
  • Are first aid/CPR certified (or can get certified by June)
  • Have knowledge of Leave No Trace (LNT) principles
  • Can attend training on Saturday, June 3, 2023

Then YOU can be a Wilderness Steward!

ICL Wilderness Steward Gavin Gee and family on patrol in the Sawtooth Wilderness.

So, what exactly are Wilderness Stewards? What do they do?

Wilderness Stewards began in 2016 to restore, protect, and enhance wilderness character throughout Central Idaho’s designated and recommended wilderness areas. The program would not be possible without dedicated volunteers and funders including the National Forest Foundation and National Wilderness Stewardship Alliance.

Wilderness Steward volunteers serve as an extension of hands, ears, and eyes for land management agencies. Between June and November, Wilderness Stewards go on independent patrols throughout our beloved Idaho backcountry and naturalize backcountry campsites, clear illegal fire rings, remove waste, and collect data about trail use for our land management agencies. 

In the seven years since program inception, Wilderness Stewards have removed 1,970.2 items of litter, naturalized 596 fire rings, cleared 156 human waste issues, and interacted with 16,655 trail users over the course of 982 independent patrols. 

Want to contribute to that impact? We make it easy for you. ICL provides in-depth wilderness stewardship training, uniform items, work gloves, trash collection kits, and of course, free swag. Stewards are responsible for their own transportation to and from trailheads and personal gear (including first aid kits, cameras or cell phones, and/or satellite messengers).

So, do you want to be a part of the awesome stewardship action, or what?

To learn a little bit more about the program, you can:

Or, if you’re already sold… Apply to become a Wilderness Steward by May 1, 2023, by clicking HERE!