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Featured Blog Posts (185)

Clues From the Recession

The current economic recession is giving some clues on how employees can best deal with future downturns.

I do have this penchant for making business plans. It’s my safety net. Some people that do seasonal work year round have the option of going home for awhile if things don’t quite work out. I do not have that option available. If I have problems, I’ll soon find myself among the ranks of the homeless. A plan in place is not quite a security still has a lot of holes. So… Continue

Added by Keith Larson on July 26, 2009 at 3:08pm — No Comments

Why I Love the Grand Tetons

This past Saturday I finally got a chance to leave Yellowstone for a day and go see my favorite mountain range....the Grand Tetons. The way these mountains shoot straight to the sky above Jackson Hole is just stunning. I must have snapped 20-30 pictures during my brief tour....but I just couldn't help myself. Every time I looked at those mountains I noticed something new that I just had to capture with my camera. I took the scenic route through the park....the road that goes over Jackson Lake… Continue

Added by aggie71 on July 19, 2009 at 6:00pm — 1 Comment

The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly (Part 5 or 3b)

This last winter season was my second time as Second Chef and Operations at the Kay El Bar Guest Ranch in Wickenburg, Arizona. Before I begin this review, I’d like to refer you to my blog about people’s views on places, Ketchup on Waffles. I’m also going to write this review can decide for yourself which is good, bad, and/or… Continue

Added by Keith Larson on July 12, 2009 at 11:00pm — 2 Comments

Fireweed 400 -- 2009 CW 24/7-11

So it's not THE Tour, but there is a major bicycle race in Alaska taking place yesterday and today...the Fireweed 400.

There are several levels...from a 50-mile fat tire roll to the 400 mile race from Sheep Mountain Lodge to Valdez and back. The longer races started yesterday. The winner finished at 8 this morning with a time of just over 20 hours.

Saturday is usually my day off. But at 5 am I was over the breakfast flattop… Continue

Added by Keith Larson on July 11, 2009 at 6:30pm — No Comments

Lion's Head and Grand View (Mile 113.5 to 107.5)

Since my last blog I have experienced a couple of firsts at Sheep Mountain Lodge. First, I took my exam and passed. I am now a Certified Surface Weather Observer for the National Weather Service. Second, I felt my first earthquake. There was a 5.4 tremor centered near Willow. I went to my room during my work break and was sitting on my bed when I felt it vibrate for a couple of seconds. No damage.

Yesterday morning I thought the light rain was passing, so I decided to take a hike… Continue

Added by Keith Larson on June 28, 2009 at 10:39am — 1 Comment

September 2009 Trip Plans

I complete my season at Sheep Mountain Lodge on September 16. Usually I have a somewhat longer time span between gigs, this one is quick. In the evening, I will take the Alaskan Direct Bus Line route back to Anchorage. I should arrive sometime between 9-10 pm. I’ll have to double check the time later.

This is the second trip that I’ve booked all my hotels through I’ll be staying overnight in Anchorage at the Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel. The next morning my plane leaves at… Continue

Added by Keith Larson on June 28, 2009 at 10:50am — 4 Comments


I have been at Yellowstone now for a few weeks and that one question has been bugging me. Why do so many folks keep coming back here to work during the summer? I look around me at work and realize that the vast majority of people that I have met are "returnees"...some have worked here for over 10 years and expect to keep coming back. Now I know the $7.25/hour can't be the big draw. And the work itself is just like working in a store in a big city (i.e. nothing special). The food has been great,… Continue

Added by aggie71 on June 19, 2009 at 6:38am — 5 Comments

Still Wrapping My Mind Around It

I am absolutely loving Yellowstone. This amazing place they call Lake has captured my heart. I am now working at the Lake Lodge, cooking and learning about management in the EDR.

Still, it snows absoluely at will, we got 4 inches on the 7th of June. One past employee reported the coldest winter she ever spent was a summer at Yellowstone!

The people are fantastic. We had a great disco party for the employees the day before opening and inspite of my pending drive to Idaho in the early… Continue

Added by Carol on June 11, 2009 at 6:37am — 4 Comments

Headed to Mt. Rainier

Hey Guys

I am in Memphis, TN ready for my flight(s) to Seattle, WA via Memphis, Atlanta, Salt Lake City, Denver, KeyWest, Chicago, Los Angeles,...

I start my job the 11th of June, just 2 days away!

I'll let you guys know what its like.


Added by Greg on June 9, 2009 at 8:47am — 1 Comment

bats in the belfry

Yep..We had a bat dive-bombing the customers and the employees at the restaurant last night. It was hilarious! I love this place... too much fun. I hope you all are having as good a season as I am. :0)

Added by akscootr on May 28, 2009 at 1:54pm — 1 Comment

Day 2 XC Park tour

Monday, May 25, 2009

Day 2

Good Morning South Dakota! The greatest thing about camping is waking up with the sun. Well, at least I wake up with the sun. Angie still enjoys sleeping in as late as I allow her to. The KOA was a welcoming sight in the morning. The "K"ampground was teeming with National Park employees enjoying a preview day of the grounds and also taking advantage of pancakes, sausage biscuits w/gravy and bacon from the kitchen. We, however, only opted for coffee that… Continue

Added by Kevin Mellott on May 26, 2009 at 10:32am — 2 Comments

Awesome day in Alaska

I was so lucky to hop on one of our company planes and take the hour flight down to fairbanks today. I needed to get some things in town and God blessed me with a awesome day !! I checked into the go north hostel which is very nice. I rented a bike planning to ride to wal mart to get everything I needed. I stopped at the thrift store and found some hiking boots that are still in good conditon for only $10 that saves me at least $70!! I also found a nice pair of columbia light weight pants that… Continue

Added by Dominic A. Smith on May 24, 2009 at 4:57pm — 5 Comments

I can finally say I have been to Montana!

Today...for the very first time in my 59 year existance...I entered the State of Montana. The first few miles looked very much like northern Wyoming (fancy that) but then things began to change. The vistas became even bigger, and the mountains on the horizon slowly grew until they pierced the clouds and dominated the view. What a spectacle for someone who's home is on a coastal plain that is flatter than a pancake. As we drove up the valley along side the Yellowstone River every bend produced… Continue

Added by aggie71 on May 22, 2009 at 8:00pm — 5 Comments

Settling Down For The Long Haul

Here I am already a month into the work here at Mt. Rushmore. So far we have had a mixed bag of weather, snow,rain and sunshine. Sometime all in one day. We just about have a full working crew and can settle down for the summer. One or two have washed out already, other's moved into new position. The RV park we stay in, is all but full. The new owner of Xanterra Parks and Resorts have started putting their changes in place. More will be coming as time goes by. Business has been steady. We make… Continue

Added by Sue on May 20, 2009 at 10:43pm — 5 Comments

The blink of an Eye

Well it seems that over the weekend someone turned on the summer switch here in Downtown Anchorage. The sun has come back with a vengeance, the trees sprouted leaves over night, and all the dang ol' tour buses have returned. It seems like only yesterday it was -35 and pitch dark here, but yet here I am soaking up the mid-morning sun in my office like a happy little lizard.

I have been in Alaska now for just over a year. There is a great deal of pride in that last sentence. And not… Continue

Added by AlaskaFound on May 20, 2009 at 12:06pm — 2 Comments

Work in New Zealand this winter!

This winter I will be attempting to do something that I am sure a lot of you here on CoolWorks have either thought about doing yourself; or have already done but wished you would have had some help.

Some people here thought it would be a great idea to share with you some of the information that I have gathered to try and make it easier for the rest of you. What a fantastic idea!

As my plan goes now I am planning to be there from Mid-Oct/ April. I do not have firm dates but this… Continue

Added by Kevin Mellott on May 7, 2009 at 12:25pm — 8 Comments

Veterans Green Corps comes online with CoolWorks

I had the chance to talk to Amy Foss, Director of Operations for the Southwest Conservation Corps, about the Veterans Green Corps. These are great opportunities for veterans who have recently returned from overseas. Below are Amy's answers to some of my questions. Please spread the word about these opportunities to any veterans you know!

What is Veterans Green Corps?

Veterans Green Jobs (VGJ) has combined efforts with the Southwest Conservation Corps (SCC) to create… Continue

Added by Kathi on April 29, 2009 at 7:30pm — 1 Comment

No Bad Days When Riding for the Brand

Did you ever have a bad personal day? Argue with your significant other? Expensive car trouble? Got turned down for the next gig?... Did you take that attitude to work with you? Do you know a co-worker that has done that? Have you ever been served by someone and wonder what that snottiness is coming from?

I worked many years at a resort that not only dealt with business groups. A large percentage of the banquet and catering business was weddings. We (the management) stressed the… Continue

Added by Keith Larson on April 16, 2009 at 6:35pm — 1 Comment

The Employee Journey -- pt.6 The Last Minute Checklist

It is getting closer and closer to the summer season. Most of you are probably excited for your 2009 adventures. When I worked seasonally I always went a little stir crazy about this time. I knew where I was going and wanted to get there. If you are in the same condition I always was, you run the risk (as I did) of forgetting to pack something or make an important final arrangement. Excitement is the friend of forgetfulness in my household. So I wrote this last-minute checklist for you to… Continue

Added by Rick Peterson on April 5, 2009 at 4:00pm — 1 Comment

Seasonal Work Strategies

I thought I would write a blog on some of the differing summer work strategies I’ve seen over the years. Some are good and some are bad, but they are popular. I see them every summer. Hopefully you can create a strategy for yourself that includes much of the good and very little of the bad.

1. The Early Bird – this strategy focuses on your first month at your new job. Most seasonal jobs come with various discounts. The Early Bird tries to use every discount they have in their first… Continue

Added by Rick Peterson on March 19, 2009 at 7:17pm — 9 Comments

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