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WHAT DOES IS MEAN TO BE AN ADVENTURE BUS CREW?
Adventure Bus is looking to expand our Crew with some new guides/drivers! Do you have what it takes to be a part of the AB Crew and do this demanding, seasonal, but extremely rewarding job?
What does it mean to be an AB guide/driver?
It means you get to meet great people from all over the world and spend time with them in great places including many national parks.
A CDL with a passenger endorsement and 5 years of driving experience, a love of the outdoors, First Aid and CPR certifications, patience with guests and a good guide mentality.
What is good guide mentality?
Basically if you see something that needs to be done, you do it! Is someone struggling to put up a tent? Help them out! The dishes need doing after a meal? Start washing! It’s a cool evening in camp? Start a campfire! You get the idea, you chip in where it’s needed. Sounds like common sense, but it takes a lot of self motivation to do this day after day all summer long BUT, it is extremely rewarding in many ways!
What are AB Driver/guides responsible for?
Usually there are two guides on every AB tour that share the following responsibilities:
-Driving: Anywhere from 1-6 hours a day, as each day and tour is different.
-Driver Logs: Keeping Federally Mandated daily logs of your driving and work hours.
-Bus Maintenance. Performing daily and pre trip vehicle inspections.
-Meal Prep and Clean up: AB guides prep and serve 70% of the meals with assistance from guests who would like to help out.
-Trip Prep: Washing sleeping bags, windows, wiping down mattresses, sweeping the bus, shopping, to prepare the bus for a new tour.
-Camp Set Up and Take Down: Assist guests with setting up tents, kitchen set up, tending a campfire, kitchen take down, packing up tents, chairs, etc…
-Hiking: Leading hikes when it is appropriate according to the permits we obtain in each area. Prepping guests for day hikes informing them about hazards, water, gear, lunch, snacks, return times, etc…
-To expect and anticipate the unexpected!
An AB Guide/Driver’s typical day:
Well, to start with, there really isn’t a typical day on the AB! For some, that is exciting, for others who like routine, maybe not so much. But, there are a few things in an AB guide’s life that happen just about every day. Breakfast prep begins somewhere between 5:30-6:30 am depending on the tour location and time of year. (Guests like their coffee and tea ready when they wake up!) Chopping fruit, scrambling eggs, or flipping pancakes comes next followed by laying out lunch fixings and kitchen clean up.
If it’s a hiking day, you’ll be prepping guests for what they will be experiencing that day, making sure they have made a lunch, filled their water bottles, are prepared with the correct clothing, footwear, maps, and information for their hikes.
If it is a pack up and move day, we pack up the kitchen, tents, chairs, load up the bus and perform pre-checks and fill out driver logs, on the Bus before hitting the road.
If our permit allows, on a hiking day you can join the group on one of the various hikes or on other activities like rafting, horse backing riding. etc. Occasionally, your driver/guide responsibilities will override your ability to hike with the group. For example, we may need to clean the bus, wash sleeping bags, food shop, prep meals, or rest up for the occasional longer upcoming drive.
It will always be your job to show up at the Bus 30 minutes prior to when the group is due back to make sure all pre-trip maintenance and inspections have been performed, if another time has not been set for you to return to help with meal prep etc.
If we have moved to a new location for the evening, we will set up our camp kitchen and begin dinner meal prep between 5:30-6:30 pm. While we prep meals, our guests usually set up their tents, shower, and assist with meals, however we assist guests with tents if they needed. AB guests are usually pretty independent, but everyone needs a little help now and again.
When dinner is done, we’ll clean up the camp kitchen, assist guests with their tents and participate in evening camp activities such as campfires, walks around camp, etc. Making sure the bus food, bays, tents, campfires, etc are secure for the evening is crucial! We don’t want any critters getting into things they should not!
Bedtime for a guide is as you see fit, but know you’ll always have another big day ahead of you, so we recommend getting to bed at a reasonable hour. Guides may choose to stay in their bus bed, or sleep in a tent if available, however, guest tent availability and set up always comes first.
We bet you have a few more questions!
Do I get a shower?
Yes! But maybe not at the exact time you need one or as often as you would like. Hygiene is an important part of being a guide, but you may have to put off that shower until other duties have been completed.
Do I get time off?
Being that this is a seasonal job, there are not a lot of days off, however, you will often get a few hours during the day where you can have time to yourself. We always comply with federal on duty and driving hours. We all need a little time to ourselves now and then, so communicating with your co-guide on what you need will be important.
Do we get to drink alcohol?
Nope. It is AB policy that while you are an AB driver/guide and on an AB tour that you do not consume any alcohol or controlled substance. Why? As AB guides we never know what we may need to deal with. At any time we may be required to evacuate our camp because of a wildfire, or drive someone to an emergency room, or assist with an injury. Best to be on your top game 24/7.
How much do we get paid?
AB guide salaries are comparable to other guiding salaries. Gratuities add to that income significantly. 100% of your food and accommodations are included and you may be able to participate in many extra activities without paying such as rafting. This varies with the activities and the tour.
How much work do you get?
Adventure Bus runs approximately 15 tours a year with the majority of those tours running June-September, however there may be one week tours offered in other months also. Depending on how many guides we have, you may get to do all of our tours in a season, or just a few. Remember, it is seasonal and you should not expect to make a living, but to supplement your income and have fun while doing it!
What is the Best part of being an AB Guide/Driver?
You can’t beat the people that join us! They are from all over the world and want to explore and appreciate beautiful places just like you do! AB has about a 90% customer return rate so they are usually very helpful on tours. It is hard to beat our destinations. There is nothing like the views in Glacier, the uniqueness of Bryce and Arches, the majesty of Grand Tetons and Alaska. And the best is the unexpected! You never know when a black bear may appear along the roadside, or an eagle lands in a tree above your campsite, or you get to see the Northern Lights, or watch a glacier calve for over a minute!
What is the worst part of being an AB Guide/Driver?
Like every job, there are somethings you don’t like. Thankfully, there are very few of those things for an AB Guide. The logs and forms required for being a commercial driver is a pain for those who do not like paperwork, but that is less than 3% of your time! Sometimes, we don’t get to do some of the fun stuff our guests do because of regulations, logistics, time, etc. But again, that’s pretty rare.
What are some characteristics of a good guide?
Patience, endurance, creativity, knowledge, knowing your limits, communication skills, self motivation, learns from mistakes, time-oriented, calm, fun, respectful, tolerant….
Think you might have additional skills beyond that of a guide/driver?
If you have skills in the following areas or would be willing to learn them, there may be other ways you can be a part of the Adventure Bus Crew! Social Media, Web Site Design, Editing, Marketing, Logistical planning (reservations, booking activities), accounting/receipts, taxes, etc…
Think you might have what it takes to be a part of the AB Crew? Click through to the following form and fill it out! It might be the first step you take to an incredible journey!