Rock Bottom Ranch – Livestock Apprenticeship
Last Updated On: November 15th, 2022 at 10:27AM MST
Contact informationFarm Address:
2001 Hooks Spur Rd
Basalt, Colorado, 81621
Primary Contact: Mariah Foley
Internship informationGeneral Farm Description: Aspen Center for Environmental Studies (ACES) is a nonprofit environmental science education organization. Since 1968, ACES has inspired a life-long commitment to the earth by providing innovative and immersive programming for all ages. We have three locations: Hallam Lake, Rock Bottom Ranch, and Catto Center at Toklat. Our programs focus on ecological literacy, regenerative agriculture, forest and ecosystem health, land restoration, and environmental leadership. Through this, ACES meets our mission of educating for environmental responsibility. Located mid-valley in Basalt, CO, Rock Bottom Ranch is a 113-acre site which dedicates approximately 70 acres to natural wildlands and about 35 acres to pasture-based, rotationally grazed multi-species livestock systems and intensive low-till vegetable production. Rock Bottom Ranch also serves as an outdoor classroom for summer camps, school groups, and community education programming to engage visitors and staff alike with questions about how humanity interacts with and impacts our ecosystems through a lens of nature-based scientific exploration and food production. The Agriculture Program aims to spark a community of food-educated citizens through the demonstration of forward-thinking, environmentally, socially, and climate-aware agriculture and land stewardship practices. We seek to educate farmers on profitable, scalable, and replicable agriculture systems. Our livestock production raises sheep, laying hens, cattle, broiler chickens, turkeys, rabbits and bees. Our vegetable production grows 50+ crops on our ⅔ acre of intensively spaced outdoor production and in our four season extension structures. Rock Bottom Ranch’s livestock and vegetable products are featured at our summer dining events, weekly farmers’ markets, vegetable CSA, and on-farm sales. Our production farm and educational site is open to the public five days a week during the summer and offers farm tours, youth and adult programs, and dining events. Agricultural staff are primarily involved in the diverse array of production agriculture operations, but have the opportunity to become involved in customer service, event, and educational experiences.
CRAFT Member Farm? No
Internship Starts: March 16th, 2023
Internship Ends: October 31st, 2023
Number of Internship Available: 2
Application Deadline: applications open until filled
Minimum Length of Stay: 7.5 months
Read full job description and apply at this link.
ACES Agriculture Apprenticeship is a hands-on learning and training program that is geared towards those with an interest in pursuing agriculture as a career. This production focused program exposes you to every aspect of the season from planning to production to sales, with the intent of making you a competitive candidate for future agriculture operations. Upon completion of this program, apprentices will feel confident and knowledgeable in a diversity of regenerative agriculture systems.
Primary Duties and Responsibilities:
1) Livestock Production:
Assist with the daily care of cattle, sheep, goats, laying hens, broilers, turkeys, rabbits, and bees.
Daily care includes: providing feed and fresh water, creating electric fencing paddocks and moving animals through a multi-species rotational grazing system, mucking out stalls and houses, collecting and washing eggs.
Participate in humane, on-property slaughter of chickens and turkeys.
Participate in evening chicken cratings through the summer.
2) Site Maintenance:
Site maintenance including mowing, weed whacking, fence repair, trail repair, event preparation, cleaning, or other site duties as needed.
Secondary Duties and Responsibilities:
1) Low-till Vegetable Production:
Assist with vegetable production including: soil preparation, seed propagation, watering, transplanting, and cultivation.
Assist with harvesting, washing, packaging, and sales of final vegetable products.
2) Customer Service, Events, and Other Duties:
Provide a welcoming and educational environment to all guests.
Lead public farm tours.
Assist with leading and mentoring summer stewards.
Assist with sales of produce and meat at local farmers’ markets and at the ranch. Farmers markets require longer work hours. CSA pick-up may require working in the evening.
Participation in on-farm events including, but not limited to, dining events, educational programs, and farm tours.
Evening events are either compensated with comp time or an hourly pay.
After hours, on-call responsibilities which will include chicken crating, animal emergencies, animal birthing, or site maintenance issues.
Contribute daily to a clean and organized site.
Other duties as assigned to further the mission of ACES.
Educational Opportunities: During the season, production responsibilities are complemented by additional learning opportunities via tours, presentations, workshops, and trainings. Some of this additional programming may require limited evening obligations. Programming primarily takes place in the spring and fall and may include: Presentations on various agricultural topics, practices, and methods including agriculture policy, production planning, and carbon sequestration; Hands-on workshops offering exposure to subjects that could include floral arrangement, welding, small engine repair, butchery, and many others; In-depth training on skills including tractor operation, haying, trailer driving, manual transmission driving, small power tools and others; Tours of local farm and food operations; Public speaking; Events set up and execution.
Skills Desired: Candidates must have the following: Exposure to agriculture production (season of production, summer internship, regular volunteering, or equivalent experience). An interest in pursuing farming as a career. Strong work ethic and understanding that farm work is rewarding, yet physically demanding. Have the ability to work over 8 hour days. Enjoy working outdoors in varying weather conditions. Able to lift heavy items. Friendly, inviting personality and positive attitude. Respect for farm products, fellow crew members, and all ACES staff. Strong willingness and desire to learn. Preferred but not required, candidates will have the following: Bilingual, particularly conversational Spanish.
Meals: Staff have access to vegetables (available seasonally (June-October, lighter in June) and eggs (available March-November)
Stipend: $485/week + housing
Housing: housing is provided
Preferred method of Contact: email