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Chapter 1 – Finding Growth in the Wild

People with outdoor jobs must be living the absolute dream, right? 

The past few years have seen an explosion of involvement in the great outdoors. People around the world have embraced new activities that keep them safe and help their mental health. That, in turn, has led to immense gains in the outdoor industry which recently saw the largest single-year growth ever recorded! Work as a guide, booker, or influencer is abundant.

But we recently asked our community what they loved about working outdoors, and BOY did we get some interesting answers. We’re excited to begin sharing the stories of these wonderfully free people taking on unique outdoor jobs that kept them outside and in their element! 

We hope you enjoy taking a glimpse into their lives, in their own words. Help us celebrate their accomplishments and the way they’ve embraced their truest selves! 

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Getting paid to breathe fresh air, surround yourself with beauty, and enjoy nature all day long… What’s not to love? Well, Charlind remembers the difficulties that come with working outdoors alongside the beauty of it. Her honesty about the struggles reminds us that good things always come with challenges. But also that those challenges foster growth that leads to maturity and clarity in life. 

Charlind – Ecological Assistant for Thesis Writer

Women's Apparel - Picture of Charlind -  -  
Charlind sits on a mountaintop looking out over a valley

When I was young, growing up on Vancouver Island, I always wanted to be an actress, painter, or interior designer. That didn’t last long though, and I ended up pursuing and earning a Bachelor’s in Science with a Major in biology. 

During my time at university, I had one of the most interesting jobs I’ve held to date. As an Ecological Assistant, I had to traverse 2 mountains all summer long collecting butterflies and cataloging local flora. The aim was to determine migratory pathways and see what the species ate within the region, which was a protected area with an endangered ecosystem containing unique plant life.  

 This job was a love-hate relationship. It was sweat, blood, and tears most days. I was constantly being stung by nettle, pricked by bushes, drenched by rain, chased by grouse, stalked by bears, or falling over cliffs. 

But on the other hand, I got to see things that I will never, ever forget. My favorite experience still haunts and mystifies me to this day!

It was extremely foggy and eerily quiet. All I could see was the silhouette of Garry Oaks through the mist. They were all gnarly and twisted, almost unnatural. But what really took my breath away was the way the blowing mist made them move. I could have sworn the trees were breathing. Reminiscing about it makes me shiver! 

At the time of doing this job, I actually had a lot of days where I did not enjoy myself. It was a lot of physical labor and dealing with uncertainty. It was facing the elements and being pummeled by nature’s forces. But looking back at it, I am most proud of this job and am so incredibly glad to have experienced it. 

It was extremely humbling and made me appreciate Mother Earth more than I ever had before. It also made me realize that I may not like what I am doing now, but I will come to appreciate and respect it later. This is what makes me feel stronger as a person. I know I can get through anything. I am POWERFUL! 

As a result of my experience, I am now a HUGE lover of nature and an avid camper. My skin crawls if I do not get out of the city and lose myself in nature for days at a time. She is my happy place.  

I will part with my motto in life which is – “It’s not bad weather, it’s bad planning.”

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