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Junior Ranger Program

"Before I came to the Junior Ranger program, I wasn’t excited to go on hikes and be out in nature; however, after working hard with my fellow crewmembers on and off trail, I’ve gained an appreciation for the ecosystem and the trails and how much work it takes to maintain their beauty. I’m proud to have worked on such a great crew to do something that everyone can appreciate, and I hope to be back again." – Brennen, 1st Year Junior Ranger

The Junior Ranger Program is the overarching name for two crew types. Applicants can choose between the Youth Ranger Crew or the Conservation/Trail Crews.  

News Feed: Stay up to date with what’s going on!

  • 3/19/20: ALL HIRING ON HOLD: The City of Boulder is working diligently to respond to community needs as news changes daily regarding COVID-19. It is still too soon to make any decisions on whether or not the Junior Ranger Program will run this summer, but the City has asked us to begin a temporary hold on ALL hiring effective immediately (including Junior Ranger Team Members) until we know more about how this virus will affect our community. We will be assessing the ability to run a Junior Ranger program under these extraordinary circumstances. If we are able to run the program, we will reopen the Junior Ranger Team Member application. Please continue to check this site in the coming weeks for updates.
  • In September, Max and Lily helped us present to the Open Space Board of Trustees – giving the Board valuable insight into what this program is all about! Start watching at 4:15 minutes to see the whole segment on Junior Rangers, or at 15:30 to hear Lily and Max speak! Huge thanks to the two of you for taking the time to share your experiences!
  • Did you know? OSMP now has an Instagram account! Why? Because you, the Junior Rangers, asked for it! Follow @boulderosmp to stay up to date, and tag us (#boulderosmp) to get your awesome photos on our feed!
  • Tax Season!
    • Junior Ranger W2s were sent out via email beginning on Thursday 1/30. Junior Ranger W2s go straight to  their  email addresses (not parents). Please have your Junior Ranger check their personal email, including spam and junk folders – as it will often get routed there. Some email services (especially gmail) will purge spam folders frequently so please check soon to make sure that you don’t miss it!
    • W2s come from payroll at and will have “HIGH IMPORTANCE – IMPORTANT TAX RETURN DOCUMENT AVAILABLE” in the Subject line.

Who We Are

The Junior Ranger Program is an opportunity for teens ages 14 to 17 years old to be employed by the City of Boulder’s Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) department to work on a variety of natural resource projects. Established in 1965 to create jobs for young people and help them develop work skills while maintaining Boulder’s public lands, the Junior Ranger Program has now employed over 4,000 youth. Since then, the program has built a legacy of community stewards who have a personal investment in the future of OSMP and all public lands.

What We Do

Since 1965, hardworking and dedicated Junior Rangers complete trail maintenance and construction, forestry, vegetation, and ecological restoration projects across OSMP lands. Junior Rangers are led by exceptional, well-trained support staff, learn critical work skills, explore OSMP, support department goals, and serve the Boulder community. Through the Junior Ranger Program, employees also receive career and leadership development as they work beside project sponsors and natural resource professionals and attend organized talks and trainings with department staff. Exposure to these management practices combined with environmental educational presentations, develop lifelong stewards.

A Day in the Life of a Junior Ranger

“This program teaches youth the skills necessary to be effective, responsible leaders and stewards of our natural resources.”

Be a Junior Ranger

Recruitment temporarily on hold due to COVID-19 – please check back for updates.

Lead a Junior Ranger

Recruitment temporarily on hold due to COVID-19 – please check back for updates.