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Shasta Valley
resource conservation district

Yreka, CA


Restoring Fire-Adapted Forests and Watershed Stewardship in the Greater Klamath-Cascade

Desired Skills/Traits:

  • Academic background in any of the natural science fields, including but not limited to forestry, environmental science, rangeland science, hydrology, engineering, geology, wildlife, etc.; OR a strong interest in the natural resources but may not possess a formal education in related subject matter.

  • Comfortable navigating uneven terrain and variable topography on foot. 

  • Strong written and oral communication 

  • Time management and prioritization 

  • Self-motivation, problem solving skills 

  • Knowledge of the general ecology and natural resource history of the western states 

  • Novice to moderate GIS skills 

  • Fieldwork experience with hydrology, forestry, fire, etc 

  • Basic First Aid/CPR

  • An ESRI license

Openings: 2 of 2

shasta valley rcd 2.jpeg
Focus Area: Forestry/Fire

Climate Mitigation & Adaptation, Ecological Forestry, Fire Preparedness & Management, Watershed Management

projects breakdown







Education & Outreach


Goals & Needs

 The Shasta Valley Resource Conservation District is a special district government serving a large portion of Siskiyou County. The RCD has two main sides: forestry and fuels, and watershed and soils. The forestry and fuels work addresses hazardous fuel loading in our forest and woodland systems, a result of decades of fire suppression and exclusion. This work involves managing projects that reduce fuel loading, increase vertical and horizontal spacing, and ultimately promotes forest health by increasing the landscape’s ability to be resilient to fire and warming temperatures. This will include returning fire to the landscape with the Siskiyou Prescribed Burn Association, a loose coalition of partner organizations sponsored in part by the RCD. The watershed and soils work involves continuing long-term water monitoring on the Shasta River and its tributaries, as well as local-scale water quality projects on ranches to promote both salmonid and rangeland health in the face of a less reliable snowpack and rising soil and water temperatures. The Shasta Valley RCD will play a major role in the implementation of groundwater monitoring in compliance with the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) for the Siskiyou’s three medium priority groundwater basins.


Though there is no typical day of work, it would be reasonable to expect a mix of office and field work, which may include attending meetings with project partners, collecting water data out in the river, or flagging units for fuel reduction projects. Prior Fellows have assisted with GIS needs of the organization, managed projects outright, inspected contractor work, produced reports, and much more.  Both of the focus areas help to enhance the resilience of our local landscape to increase the function of the ecosystem services they provide, including but not limited to enhanced wildlife habitat, water quality and quantity, and carbon sequestration. 

Capacity Building Projects

Forestry and Fuels Fellow 


  1. Forestry and Fuels Project Management: The fellow will build out capacity for the RCD by taking on project management responsibilities with the support of RCD staff including but not limited to GIS, contract administration, work inspections, engaging with partners on project development. Outcomes include general project progress across a spectrum of project types.  

  2. Defensible Space in Southern Siskiyou: With new money coming in for home hardening and defensible space work in Mt. Shasta and Dunsmuir, the fellow will assist with outreach, home assessments, and writing scope-of works. Outcomes will be increased project progression that help serve critical wildland-urban interface areas. Fellows can expect to have high engagement with local agencies and partners, as well as the general public. 

  3. Siskiyou Prescribed Burn Association: Fellows will meet with landowners, discuss prescribed burn project opportunities, and participate in prescribed fire. This will vary between piles and broadcast. The RCD will assist with getting necessary training for the fellow to meet minimum NWCG FFT2 equivalencies as necessary. Outcomes will be increased capacity to safely and appropriately return fire to the landscape.  


Water, Soils, and Rangeland Fellow 


  1. Shasta River Long-term Monitoring: Fellow will independently collect in-stream data on a recurring schedule for the Shasta River and its tributaries to continue the RCD’s longterm data set. Public interaction with ranchers, water agencies, and non-profits will give the fellow invaluable insight into the water politics and science in a region balancing the needs of its people and its salmonid resources. This work is part of a complex of water projects in the Shasta Valley that the RCD manages. Fellow will assist with watershed assessments for the upper Shasta River, and be a part of numerous local scale project management. 

  2. Groundwater Monitoring and Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA): Fellow will be directly involved with the rolling out of SGMA in the Scott, Shasta, and Butte Valley groundwater basins. Field work will consist primarily of equipment installation, calibration, and troubleshooting/maintenance of 60+ wells, and gathering of water chemistry data (chemical constituents, and isotopes). 

  3. Water Efficiency Projects in the Shasta Valley: Fellow will provide and contribute to multiple local scale water infrastructure and improvement projects at various Shasta Valley ranches. Projects range from efficiency planning, fish passage and infrastructure, to ditch efficiency calculations. Fellows will work closely with RCD water staff, private enterprise, and the ranching public to come to solutions that balance water use for ranching and habitat quality for salmonids. 

Organizational & Community Highlights

The Shasta Valley RCD’s office is located in Yreka, Siskiyou County, CA, though our massive district boundary encompasses the entire mainstem Klamath River and its minor tributaries from the state line to just past Happy Camp, the entire Shasta River watershed, and virtually the entire Sacramento River watershed within Siskiyou County. This includes glacier-capped Mt. Shasta, which at 14,180 ft is the second tallest Cascade volcano and dominates the northern California landscape. Yreka is Siskiyou County’s largest city at just under 8,000 residents, and our closest major cities are Redding, CA and Ashland-Medford, OR. Siskiyou County relies heavily on ranching, logging, and tourism, and nearly the entire area is considered a Disadvantaged Community.  

Siskiyou County experiences all four seasons, though Yreka does not see nearly as much rain and snow as Mt. Shasta City for example, owing to its location in the rain shadow of the Klamath Mountains. If an individual enjoys backpacking, fishing, kayaking, or snow sports, they would be hard-pressed to find an area with better access than Siskiyou County. For plant-lovers, the nearby Klamath Mountains, who are easily accessed from Yreka, contain the richest temperate conifer forests in the world, along with world-famous flowering plant diversity. For those interested in wildlife, Siskiyou County lies at the front of the Gray Wolf’s return to the state, while the endlessly fascinating Klamath Mountains are the western North America’s amphibian diversity hotspot. In the hot summers our local Klamath, Scott, Salmon, Sacramento, and McCloud rivers compete with the alpine lakes of the Marble Mountains and Trinity Alps for the best swimming spot. The Klamath Mountain’s most remote areas are protected in numerous wilderness areas spread across the Klamath and Shasta-Trinity National Forests. Winter sports at Mt. Ashland and Mt. Shasta Ski Park are affordable and easy to reach, and the Mt. Shasta area has robust cross-country and snow-shoeing infrastructure, while Mt. Shasta and Yreka are continuously growing their mountain biking trail networks.  

Our workplace culture is flexible and relies entirely on staff member’s own motivation and organization to move projects forward. Teleworking is possible when weather prohibits a trip to the office; and work in the field is common. Field work may include but is not limited to flagging boundaries, meeting with partners to tour project sites, collecting water data in the river, or inspecting contract work. Our agency will impart crucial professional skills to the fellow including but not limited to being a self-motivated, organized worker who sets their own schedule in coordination with other agency staff to get work done. Our fellow will communicate with stakeholders from a variety of public agencies at the municipal, county, special district, state, and federal levels, in addition to NGOs, private sector, and the public, while witnessing real-time forestry and water project management in all phases of development. 

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