Champlain Area Trails (CATS)

Champlain Area Trails (CATS) is a non-profit organization, begun in 2009, which creates and maintains hiking trails in New York’s Champlain Valley, connects people with nature, and promotes economic vitality. CATS is also a land trust that protects natural areas, farmland, clean water, and scenic vistas. CATS manages about 40 trails totaling 60 miles, adds more trails every year, holds five conservation easements, owns four properties, and works with conservation partners to protect more of the Champlain Valley’s beautiful landscape. Because the Champlain Valley has little public land, most CATS trails are on private property where each landowner has signed an agreement allowing CATS to develop and manage the trails.


CATS is offering unpaid internships to one or two college students that correspond to their summer breaks. The internships will provide learning and work experiences that entail everything from planning for trails, meeting landowners, communications, constructing and managing trails, working with volunteers, and assisting with land protection projects. Other tasks could include assisting with office work, fundraising, and grant-writing, developing property management plans, doing outdoor education, and managing updates to our website. Housing may be provided.


Internship Summary of responsibilities for 2020: The intern will implement trail projects described below, coordinate a project to improve and create maps and descriptions of trails shown on our northern and central Champlain Valley Trail Maps and shown on our website, and if time allows, develop a management plan for Essex Quarry Nature Park in Essex, NY. Other projects may include assisting with land conservation work, communications, fundraising, and outdoor education. H/she is supervised by the Executive Director and Stewardship Coordinator. This position will be full time (35 hours per week). The job will be 50% trail work and 50% mapping and/or developing the management plan.


  • Trail work – Maintain trails through vegetation management, installing infrastructure (registration boxes, trail signs and markers, bridges, etc.), working with volunteers,

developing new trails, meeting with landowners where we have or want to have trails.



  • Conservation ethic and strong commitment to hiking/skiing trails and the protection

of natural areas, farmland, and open space

  • Trail management skills (orienting, carpentry, working the land, planning, mapping)
  • Strong understanding of ecological principles and desire to learn about the natural world
  • Excellent writing and speaking skills
  • Able to work independently in outdoor situations
  • Able to keep information confidential
  • A friendly and fun-loving personality
  • Intern has own vehicle and laptop computer


Submit resumes or questions to Chris Maron at [email protected] or to contact information shown on letterhead.