Workamping in the Eastern Seirras Sucks (1 Viewer)

fimbulvetr

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So I kind of felt inclined to share my experience as a campsite host thus far, mostly as a warning to anybody thinking of doing this, but there have been some good moments as well. I found a job in Humboldt Toiyabe National Forest on workampingjobs.com. In fact I had like three offers from that site and I chose this one, because of it's proximity to Yosemite. I thought it would be cool to head down Tioga pass at some point this summer, but its looking less and less likely. When I got here I notice my van was leaking coolant and it's coming from the intake manifold, not something I want to wrench on in a campsite if I can avoid it and not a job I currently have the patience for given everything else going on here.

So I found a shop 60 miles away in Gardenerville, NV and its going to be an expensive fix, but reasonable given the scope of the job. So I am currently saving up to do that, while dealing with a lot of extreme right-wing inbred fisherman. I've seen more MAGA hats here than anywhere else I've ever been. I guess having read John Muir, I thought the Seirras would be populated with people like me that respect the environment and nature and all that tree hugger crap. That isn't what I've found. I've found mostly wealthy people in RV's taking their children out on the lake, which is stocked with fish because it's been waaaaay over fished at this point and that is a necessity to keep the tourism here alive.

They come up here, leave trash everywhere, diarrhea shit all over the bathrooms that I have to clean and find this or that to complain to my manager about. It is probably the most demeaning job I've had in the last 15 years and I am currently trying to find any reason to go somewhere else. They pay me for 25 hours, but the fact is I'm always "on call," to police their sometimes non-sensical rules and regulations, that I really don't give a shit about. I'm supposed to have 2 days a week off, but that doesn't happen. In fact some guy told me the other day that I don't get days off, which is just the entitled baby boomer attitude up here. He parked in the wrong site, my boss found out and charged him for two sites, he tried to say it was my fault for not noticing on my day off. Overall I'd say this whole workamping thing is vastly overrated. It really sucks.

I thought I'd make a few friends up here, but they are all a bunch of Trump voting squares, so that's not going to happen. The racism up here is pretty extreme too. I've noticed that when they warn me about a "problem camper," they are always a person of color or not straight or trans or whatever and I've had 0 problems with any of these, "problem campers." It is a culture of racism up here and the go around harassing people that are different and because of that probably 99% of the campers here are white. I've got no problem with white people, but it just seems like the run everybody else out and I've got a real problem with that. Since my political views have gotten out, I've gotten glares and threatening remarks from some of the other hosts.

Now it is beautiful here. There is an alpine lake surrounded by snow capped mountains. I love the nature, but the people are terrible. It's not ideal to have to drive 60 miles to get food either. I don't think I would ever do this again, certainly not in this location. Most outdoorsman types don't care about anything but what they can take from the land and they never give anything back. They "use the whole blah blah blah," but leave fishing line everywhere, hooks littered all over the creek, empty beer cans strewn about, etc... Not what people who care about nature do. Anyway, that's what I've got currently. I would love to hear about some traveller job resources, because I need to get the hell out of here soon.
 
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SaltyCrew

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I took a similar job on Drummond Island in the UP of Michigan early this spring, and the EXACT same thing happened to me. I was so excited for the job, and it turned out to be hell. I made it a month or so, sold my car and rode my bike the hell out of there.

EDIT: the job I took was for a private campground/bar-grill. By saying the exact same thing happened to me, I was referring to the fact I encountered tons of racist folk, tons of trash thrown everywhere, general disrespect for nature, all over the entire island. Such a shame, because it's a beautiful island. I spent my free time riding my bike around picking up cans, worth 10 cents each in Michigan. One of the first days I did this, I took 2 loads into the gas station to redeem them. The second time I went in that day, the clerk looks at me with all these dirty cans and she says, "well now this is just funny." I replied with, "what's funny? The fact all you locals drive around drunk and throw your cans out the window and now I'm picking them up?" She twitched her head a few times, didn't say anything else and walked away.
 
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Faceplant

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We knew a couple that absolutely loved their job hosting at Pinecrest, about 20 years ago. They moved around the state to a new location each season.When they needed something, one would stay, the other would do whatever needed doing off-site, including making regular forays back to their home in the Bay area to collect mail, see their kids and grandkids, etc. . According to them, they were required to clean the restrooms twice per day. There were four sets of restrooms, they shared the duties, and it did not take them long to do the job each day. They sold firewood, had jam sessions with friends most nights in their site, and only had to pay friendly visits to ne’re do wells asking them to cease and desist with any bad behavior, before passing the problem off to a park ranger.

That is the pattern I’ve seen camping in state campgrounds - a retired couple with a truck and camper, a second vehicle for trips out to civilization. Sounds to me as if you did not really think it through, it is not ideal if you’re without help.
 
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fimbulvetr

fimbulvetr

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We knew a couple that absolutely loved their job hosting at Pinecrest, about 20 years ago. They moved around the state to a new location each season.When they needed something, one would stay, the other would do whatever needed doing off-site, including making regular forays back to their home in the Bay area to collect mail, see their kids and grandkids, etc. . According to them, they were required to clean the restrooms twice per day. There were four sets of restrooms, they shared the duties, and it did not take them long to do the job each day. They sold firewood, had jam sessions with friends most nights in their site, and only had to pay friendly visits to ne’re do wells asking them to cease and desist with any bad behavior, before passing the problem off to a park ranger.

That is the pattern I’ve seen camping in state campgrounds - a retired couple with a truck and camper, a second vehicle for trips out to civilization. Sounds to me as if you did not really think it through, it is not ideal if you’re without help.
so
 

Faceplant

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So . . . you failed to think things through, eh? Their perspective was just a bit different to yours. Why is that, do you think?

“Most outdoorsman types don't care about anything but what they can take from the land and they never give anything back. They "use the whole blah blah blah," but leave fishing line everywhere, hooks littered all over the creek, empty beer cans strewn about, etc.”

That is unmitigated bullshit. You are mistaking outdoorsmen for ignorant city folk that come out into nature once or twice a year. Most rural people who are also avid outdoorsmen jealously protect and appreciate the environment they love so much.

And furthermore, since you do not even seem to know the difference between “outdoorsman types” and ignorant city-folk, I am gonna venture a guess that you’re a city person yourself.
 
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fimbulvetr

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So, prima facia that's what I thought the job would be like, but it's actually more work than it looks like to the outside world. We have one LEO for about 300 square miles up here. As somebody that doesn't believe in the police I don't call them unless somebody is burning the park down which almost happened last night.

I am used to being on my own. Spent a year in Portland, by myself, boondocked and traveled the last year by myself, I kind of like it that way. I don't actually mind people and have had some great campers, but the people I work for and the "sportsman," are kind of insufferable. This being so close to Yosemite I didn't think I'd have to babysit people about using the bear box and the other night somebody had their tent swiped by a bear because they had food in there and they ended up getting sent 60 miles to a hospital. It pisses me off because these idiots do dumb shit and go home and now the poor bear has to be hazed.

Because of the cut budgets and the sheer number of idiots it's impossible to address this as a law enforcement issue anyway. Its just entitled people coming out for the weekend stripping the place of it's resources and in the process all the things that make it beautiful.

Cleaning the bathrooms is my least complaint, just don't know how people live this long having explosive diarrhea.

Nothing could have prepared me for this level of disappointment. Unless you've got something helpful to say then please just disregard everything here. I read the job description and it's nothing like the actual situation. Nobody is coming up here trying to jam around a campfire, I wish to hell they would. I've got some meat puppets and Woody guthrie tunes Ive been pickin on by my lonesome. I'm about to head to vallejo just to have somebody to work on music with.
 
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fimbulvetr

fimbulvetr

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So . . . you failed to think things through, eh? Their perspective was just a bit different to yours. Why is that, do you think?

“Most outdoorsman types don't care about anything but what they can take from the land and they never give anything back. They "use the whole blah blah blah," but leave fishing line everywhere, hooks littered all over the creek, empty beer cans strewn about, etc.”

That is unmitigated bullshit. You are mistaking outdoorsmen for ignorant city folk that come out into nature once or twice a year. Most rural people who are also avid outdoorsmen jealously protect and appreciate the environment they love so much.

And furthermore, since you do not even seem to know the difference between “outdoorsman types” and ignorant city-folk, I am gonna venture a guess that you’re a city person yourself.
you're an idiot. these people are from rural cali or Nevada, I talk to them and then I clean up their trash. Outdoorsman have this narrative monopolized and it's absolute lunacy to believe, like they are "controlling populations," of what? stocked fish and quail? give me a break. Its hunters and fisherman that caused this problem and it's just as much rural idiots as it is city people. I'd say, anecdotally it's more the rural, uneducated types that deny climate change that come out here and wreck the most shit. So you can stick that narrative right where it belongs, up your uneducated ass.
 
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fimbulvetr

fimbulvetr

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I took a similar job on Drummond Island in the UP of Michigan early this spring, and the EXACT same thing happened to me. I was so excited for the job, and it turned out to be hell. I made it a month or so, sold my car and rode my bike the hell out of there.
I'm about ready to cut and run on these dumbasses myself.
 

Faceplant

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I can tell you’re a real “people person”. Now it’s all someone else’s’ fault.

All sing the familiar refrain . . . “The entire world are idiots . . .except me!”
 
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fimbulvetr

fimbulvetr

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I can tell you’re a real “people person”. Now it’s all someone else’s’ fault.

All sing the familiar refrain . . all the world are idiots, except me

hey your the one saying it. Do you have anything but ad hominym or are we done here. go back to your cave, troll.
 
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fimbulvetr

fimbulvetr

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I can tell you’re a real “people person”. Now it’s all someone else’s’ fault.

All sing the familiar refrain . . . “The entire world are idiots . . .except me!”
I actually find it kind of hillarious how easy it is to bring you opinionated snowflakes out from the woodworks. Anytime somebody drops a fact you're just around the corner with nothing substantial but a moronic opinion to slam them with. Now that that's out of the way, you want to be discuss the issue at hand? We have allowed hunters and Farmers, largely morons like the bundys kill of predators that belong here like grizzlys and wolves because it supports the economy of "sport fishing/hunting," there is no sport in shooting artificially over populated deer or stocked fish. We have wrecked the outdoors by letting inbred redneck outdoorsman have their way with it. Good job, you're all so tough you can catch a fish we put here for you to catch. Its not davey crocket fighting grizzly's with their bare hands, it's alt-right rehects with little dicks trying to feel like a man while their wife fucks her yoga instructor. deal with it.
 

SlankyLanky

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I actually find it kind of hillarious how easy it is to bring you opinionated snowflakes out from the woodworks. Anytime somebody drops a fact you're just around the corner with nothing substantial but a moronic opinion to slam them with. Now that that's out of the way, you want to be discuss the issue at hand? We have allowed hunters and Farmers, largely morons like the bundys kill of predators that belong here like grizzlys and wolves because it supports the economy of "sport fishing/hunting," there is no sport in shooting artificially over populated deer or stocked fish. We have wrecked the outdoors by letting inbred redneck outdoorsman have their way with it. Good job, you're all so tough you can catch a fish we put here for you to catch. Its not davey crocket fighting grizzly's with their bare hands, it's alt-right rehects with little dicks trying to feel like a man while their wife fucks her yoga instructor. deal with it.
I actually find it kind of hilarious that yer response to somebody not even disagreeing with you is to call them a opinionated snowflake (maybe too much time round them alt right folk got you talking like those morons) because they pointed out that maybe, just maybe you thought you landed a cool job that turned out to not be what you expected.

Yer right though, that's a real fucking drag about having to restock a lake with fish for people to feel like a big bad outdoors man. And I completely agree with you cleaning up camp trash or having to clean toilets or deal with assholes all day is a bummer. It sounds like every single job I've ever had though. Live and learn and all that shit. You can always quit right?
 

Coywolf

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Oh for fucks sake people.

It sounds like you had a bad experience Work camping. There is a reason you only really see retired folk with dispensible income and class A RVs doing that job.

One of the problems is that yes, Recreation Resource Management and similar government contractors do mis-post these jobs and not talk about the shitty pay, shitty hours, shitty people ,and the fact they are going to make a shit load of money off of your back.

No one is "stupid" or "not thinking it through" it's just an experience that one must go through in order to find out why it is really like.

Next point. Ya. People in the Eastern Sierras are mostly conservative, Trump Voting, Public Land Hating (But I'ma HUNTER, and a FISHERMAN!) Yahoo's. But not all of them, most of these people you are talking about comefrom Reno, LA, Vegas, and NorCal. I know many locals who are just as pissed as anyone else about dumbass "outdoorsman" city people fucking up the Eastern Sierras. I don't blame them for being hostle. Look at Mammoth.

Also, I may not know what van you have, but how is it even possible for coolant to be coming from the intake manifold...? Head gaskets maybe?

Either way for good sake calm down and handle criticism, whether it be warranted or not, like an adult. So sick of seeing these heated responses.

I work as a Park Ranger. I see this shit every day. I hate the campground contractors just as much as the next guy, just let this be A good post to warn people to seriously vet these kind of gigs before driving out to them

I dont mean to sound harsh, I'm just sick of seeing these petty posts turning into an unfavorable staff action.
 
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Coywolf

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AND ANOTHER THING....lol

I gotta say that rich spoiled trust fund liberal techies from the bay area/Portland/Seattle are just as much to blame for Fucking up public land with Instagram (#HastagLocation) and and their "ultra light gear" that uses enough pertoleum to kill a whale...

As the redneck hunters and fisherman. In fact, probably more so. Hunters and fishermen are an extremely valuable section of this country when it comes to Public Land. We would lose it all to Rob Bishop and Jason Chaffetz without them.

Not saying they are all good, and liberal techies are all bad....but ya know who I've seen who are the WORST out of all of them? Dirtbag Climbers and Boy Scouts. Mark my words.
 

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Man, reading these threads whilst peaking on acid in a Home Depot parking lot in Oroville Ca with hundreds of people setting off mortars like right in my face right now is not how I thought this night was gonna go but I'm into it.

Huge shout out to Jai in that "Royale with Cheese" hippie bus for styling me out with that random hit of blotter with such fortuitous timing. It's been a night to remember. Y'all be nice to each other, and don't be callin my boy ibuzzard stupid ya dick.
 

SaltyCrew

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Also, I may not know what van you have, but how is it even possible for coolant to be coming from the intake manifold...? Head gaskets maybe?
This is pretty common on high milage/severe use vehicles. Alot of the time the leak is external, runs down the block and burns off. It's bad when the leak is internal and saturates the inside of the intake. The effects can eventually lead to hydrolocking if not fixed.

The coolant circulates through the intake manifold on almost all V block design engines. All the domestic manufactures used this design at one point or another, still today, and many foreign manufacturers as well. Just like a head gasket can start leaking internally or externally, the intake manifold is prone to do the same.
 
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fimbulvetr

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Also, if you don't mind me asking, where was your duty station? In Nevada or CA? That would make a big difference.
So here is the thing, if we were talking about criticism, I can take that, when some guy comes on here swinging with hostility I'm going to swing back. I say things like snowflake tounge in cheek and obviously some people aren't really familiar with sarcasm. Also the idea thst this is city folks is trash. The most respectful people I've had were from LA and the least so far has been people from rural nevada and utah. I think this narrative needs to be adjusted. I'm from rural Pennsylvania and this sort of behavior from hunters and fisherman is the rule, not the exception. They claim to care but then they cut their line and leave the hook in a fish they don't want and call it catch and release. This city folk vs country folk mentality is something I see as part of the problem and it mostly seems to be a way to be racist without using language you can't easily walk back. The other term I hear up here is "problem campers," which I explained before. Its thinly veiled racism. Now I'm not saying that is what you're referring to, but there is a reason you don't often see people of color up here. All of that, including the linguistics that reinforce it should change because its starting to turn into a dog whistle term.
Now I mushroom hunt and forage and have clocked a lot of hours in backcountry by myself, I've also lived in cities and from the experience I've had anecdotally and from readily available data on how humans affect their environments I personally think we need to soften cities in some ways and everyone should move into one and quarantine human impact to urban areas. The wilderness should be a place we are permitted to enter only temporarily and after we've proven we can respect its wildness. There isn't really such thing as a wild animal anymore, as most do quite well eating our waste and here the deer are fed so frequently they come right up to people and demand food by stomping at you and snorting. Bears have developed similar behavior and its all from being poorly trained by humans. I say all this with a real love of the wild places that are left, just like I never harvest even 1/3 of the chanterelles I find and they are one of my favorite wild edible mushrooms. Sometimes you have to leave the things you love alone or they might cease to exist entirely. It is already tge case that you cannot get more than 7 miles from a road in the US. The real wilderness is shrinking and when you fly over tge country its pretty sad to note that you can always see a city or at least the scars of agriculture.
Somebody that really loves the wilderness takes nothing back with them because they know that makes it less wild.
I can't go into detail about where I work publicly, because I still work here. If you want to know, dm me.
As per the van leaking coolant I know its very rare that the manifold is what is leaking. I thought at first it was the head gasket, but there is no cooland in the oil, there is no white smoke, it isnt driving harsh or any of the signs that would suggest a head gasket issue. I did trace the leak and the mechanic I took it to confirmed it was likely a bad intake manifold gasket. It's a 1999 gmc Savanna. I haven't done anything but clean things up as best I can so I cant totally confirm that until I do. It's a real pain to work on these things unfortunately.
Basically I have to stay here until I can afford to fix this. Then I'll quit and will post where I worked. It is disgraceful how much money they are raking in up here and how little it pays. I am responsible for a few thousand dollars at any given time, but I wont make all summer what I make them in a week. Selling this off wholesale to private contractors has really made the whole thing pretty disgusting. Its a big facade to make people think they are in untouched wilderness, but we are out here cobbling this Disneyland freak show together Truman show style.
 
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fimbulvetr

fimbulvetr

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I disagree completely that without hunters we'd lose the wilderness. We have lost the wilderness and it is because of hunters, but I agree completely about the instagram #getoutside people. I love ultralite stuff because I have a bad back though and canvass military packs just don't cut it. I don't know many climbers around here so I can't say, but having been a boyscout I think it is where "sportsman," get indoctrinated into the idea that hunting helps anything. I'd much rather see camera weilding yuppies than gun toting retards out in the back country and that is for all kinds of reasons. Hunters are cruel, selfish and uneducated and are the last subset of the populace that should be allowed to own a firearm.
 

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