Ranchlands Zapata Ranch
As a Wrangler, you are a primary representative of Ranchlands and Zapata Ranch for guests, and you must be warm, gracious, education and guest experience-focused, able to think on your feet at all times, and present an authentic Western appearance. Your primary duties will be to guide guests on horseback rides throughout the ranch and Great Sand Dunes National Park; educate them about all aspects of the ranch, surrounding area, and Ranchlands’ mission; help with care of our 60+ head horse herd under guidance of the Programs Manager; and assist as needed with other aspects of Zapata’s hospitality programs. Safety is our number one concern, followed closely by ensuring that all of our guests have the best possible stay and educational experience at Zapata.
While this is a seasonal position, for the right candidate this is a great gateway to future opportunities within Ranchlands and its wider hospitality operations. We value people who are passionate about the work they do and want to join a community of people dedicated to agriculture, conservation, education, and hospitality.
To apply, email us with a full resume, references, a riding video (incl. catching your horse, tacking up, mounting/dismounting, and walk/trot/canter), and a cover letter explaining what you value in life and why you want to work with Ranchlands. Please include “Zapata Wrangler” in the subject line of your email. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis; interviews for our 2024 season will take place starting in November 2023. We look forward to hearing from you!
- Greet guests, introduce yourself, engage with them, and anticipate their needs throughout their stay.
- Educate and inform guests about Ranchlands, The Nature Conservancy, and other partners and agents that we work closely with, as well as how the Medano-Zapata Ranch operates (incl. our mission, goals, and environment).
- Guide guests on rides on the ranch, in the Great Sand Dunes National Park, and any other horseback programs.
- Curate imaginative & educational outdoor experiences tailored to each guest.
- Guide interpretive hikes with guests when scheduled.
- As needed, lead vehicle bison tours on the Medano for all inclusive guests and day visitors.
- Assist with all workshops and programs throughout the season with a focus on facilitating guest experience.
- Lead and assist with afternoon activities as needed, including but not limited to: roping lessons, leatherworking sessions, naturalist walks, bird watching, hosting appetizers at the mercantile, and assisting with mercantile sales.
- Assist with dinner service and dish duties as needed. Represent Zapata’s food program by answering questions about produce and the journey of our food, delivering exceptional service throughout meal times.
- Write guest thank you notes by the end of each guest week.
- Any other activities that come up as relevant to guest services.
- Assist with daily care of horses, including grooming, tacking up, and attention to sickness or injury.
- Wrangle horses in and out of their pasture on rotation through the week.
- Assist with daily routine survey of tack and equipment; take note of anything that needs to be repaired and pull it out of use until fixed.
- Maintain the corral area daily, keeping it clean and tidy and paying attention to any repairs that are needed.
- Regularly pull weeds in the corral area and round pen.
- Conduct riding orientations when required according to the Zapata Ranch guidelines.
- Ensure horse pastures have strong intact fences; check all fences and gates before pasture change.
- Ensure pastures and corrals have a dependable water supply each day.
- Keep first aid supplies stocked and tidy.
- Ensure your saddlebags are stocked with first aid supplies.
*Other Duties as Assigned*
- All staff are expected to help out and take part in any area of the lodge operations as needed. This may include dishes, serving, sweeping walkways or weeding, cleaning vehicles, taking laundry to town, assisting with last minute dining preparations, shuttling vehicles, and helping your colleagues by any means.
- Airport collection and drop-off of guests.
- Help with basic upkeep and cleanliness of vehicles and trailers.
- Assist with the upkeep of the lodge and grounds — sweeping sidewalks, breaking down cardboard boxes for recycling, raking leaves, picking up sticks.
- Assist with all other necessary projects, including but not limited to: painting, varnishing, repairs, organizing shops, clearing and maintaining the walking trail.
CHARACTERISTICS FOR SUCCESS
- Maintain a positive attitude at all times.
- Exceed guests expectations; go above and beyond to deliver an outstanding hospitality experience.
- Fully support all colleagues in ensuring the smooth running of day-to-day operations, and be a dependable member of a hardworking and productive team.
- Be consistently guest-oriented while at work and around the lodge by engaging with guests both during and between activities.
- Be proactive, self-starting, able to work both independently and collaboratively, and able to maintain a positive attitude.
- Use good sense, practical knowledge, and the ability to make good judgements to problem-solve in the field.
- Identify safety risks and make the effort to avoid them wherever possible.
- Be an authentic and passionate representative of Ranchlands and all our partners.
- Lifelong rider, or proven advanced experience in different riding disciplines for a shorter period of time.
- Proven interest in ecology, biology, geology, land management, ranching, conservation or related field.
- Service or hospitality experience preferred but not required.
- Excellent conversationalist and communicator.
- Valid driver’s license.
DESIRED KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS & EXPERIENCE
- Willingness and ability to build meaningful relationships with all demographics and ages of people.
- Can-do attitude and excellent, thoughtful problem solver.
- Ability to recognize when tasks need to be done and take initiative to complete them.
- Friendly and warm personality.
WORK SCHEDULE + TIME OFF
- This is a seasonal, full-time position.
- Reasonable overtime to meet business needs are likely.
- Specific work schedules are set on a weekly basis and will vary according to the needs of the business; staff must be willing and able to adapt to meet a flexible weekly schedule.
- One day off per week guaranteed, according to the weekly work schedule. Further time off where possible.
- Additional five (5) days unpaid time off may be requested within the season, with approval by the Lodge Manager & Programs Manager being contingent upon the ability to meet guest needs and coordination of staff schedules across all departments.
This an hourly non-exempt position paid at a rate of $14.42 per hour, with overtime paid at time-and-one-half the regular rate of pay.
This position is eligible to receive a share of pooled tips received from guests on a monthly basis
This position is required to be on-site, with shared housing and utilities provided.
TO APPLY – APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS
To apply, email us a full resume, references, a riding video (incl. catching your horse, tacking up, mounting/dismounting, and walk/trot/canter), and a cover letter explaining what you value in life and why you want to work with Ranchlands. Please include “Zapata Wrangler” in the subject line of your email. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis; interviews for our 2024 season will take place starting in November 2023. We look forward to hearing from you!
Visit website here: https://ranchlands.com/
All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or status as a protected veteran.
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