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Author Topic: Smokejumpers  (Read 25041 times)

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Offline WildlandFirefighter912

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Re: Smokejumpers
« Reply #60 on: March 22, 2016, 12:20:40 pm »
how much do they pay for wild fires  hour or by the day  I did a lot of small  wild fire fighting with our fire co  maybe 1-20a would burn not like some you guys gals do could not imagine weeks on end fighting fire

I'm State. So i get paid salary and comp time unless on Federal incident..then its time and a half and my regular 8...so if i work over my 40 hour period in a week..all of that will go to overtime- yay. Feds and some state and contractors get hazard pay. I dont..

There are several places to get on with wildland firefighting- Contractors (Grayback, etc), State, and Federal.

First and foremost, you must love the job and have dedication to protect our land. You must have a strong willing to create a brotherhood.


Once you get the job..you will be trained in the NWCG and get red carded. You will work your way up to whatever you want to do...engine boss, heavy equipment boss, hand crew boss, etc.


Handcrews are broken up into Type 3, Type 2, Type 2 IA, and Type 1.



Offline CJennings

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Re: Smokejumpers
« Reply #61 on: March 22, 2016, 07:17:42 pm »
If someone is interested in firefighting, my advice would be to try to get on with a federal agency (NPS, BLM, USFS, doesn't matter which) or one of the better state agencies (Cal Fire for example). Take a private sector job if all else fails but with the government agencies you'll generally get paid better and have better benefits while employed and you won't have to worry about supply issues at fire camp. Work will be a bit more steady and certain regardless of the severity or lack thereof of fire season. You'll make 40 hours even if you don't go on a fire, which is better than nothing.

The base wage is not going to be too impressive. Where you make your money is to get onto a fire and get the hazard pay if you're federal (25 percent of your base wage on a wildfire but not at a prescribed fire) and then put in long hours and get overtime. If federal, try to be on the crew that's on a fire on July 4 or any other federal holiday to get holiday pay tacked on. You better love the work though because considering all the dangers (my favorite joke on the fire line was about the "baked potato" bag, a.k.a., fire shelter, which you really never want to have to use...) the pay isn't worth it if you don't like the work.

You also don't have to be strictly fire if you work for some of the land management agencies like the USFS. If you take the classes and keep your red card active you can get in on firefighting even if your regular job is something else. That somewhat depends on your supervisor's willingness to let you go and whether or not the fire people want you. The odd thing about working fire in the federal government if you're not a regular fire employee is that qualifications may not be reflected in pay. For example, I made more than my squad boss on a fire because I was a higher GS level at my normal job (timber) even though it was my first season doing any fire.  :D

Offline ppine

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Re: Smokejumpers
« Reply #62 on: June 24, 2016, 03:38:41 pm »
I have a close friend that jumped out of Redmond, OR. I have heard his stories for years. He did complain only about walking out with all of that equipment.  The Missoula smokejumpers had pack strings to haul out there gear. One day my friend decided to become a slurry bomber pilot.

One day they got a call for a jump and the "get down ropes" were really long, like 175 feet. He knew they were going to the West Side and going to be in old growth. After sometime on the ground, they realized that the faller on their crew reqlly had no experience with the really big Doug fir and WRC they were dealing with. They called in some local loggers, we used to call them fellers.  Two middle-aged guys with beer guts show up with their big saws ready to go to work. The smokejumpers were young and made out of steel.  The loggers loaded up their fuel, water, saws, tools and lunch and headed up the hill. None of the jump crew could keep up with them.  Never under estimate people that have had a life in the woods.
Forester

Offline WildlandFirefighter912

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Re: Smokejumpers
« Reply #63 on: June 30, 2016, 07:05:25 am »
I have a close friend that jumped out of Redmond, OR. I have heard his stories for years. He did complain only about walking out with all of that equipment.  The Missoula smokejumpers had pack strings to haul out there gear. One day my friend decided to become a slurry bomber pilot.

One day they got a call for a jump and the "get down ropes" were really long, like 175 feet. He knew they were going to the West Side and going to be in old growth. After sometime on the ground, they realized that the faller on their crew reqlly had no experience with the really big Doug fir and WRC they were dealing with. They called in some local loggers, we used to call them fellers.  Two middle-aged guys with beer guts show up with their big saws ready to go to work. The smokejumpers were young and made out of steel.  The loggers loaded up their fuel, water, saws, tools and lunch and headed up the hill. None of the jump crew could keep up with them.  Never under estimate people that have had a life in the woods.

Yeah i saw a 70 yr old+ man felling trees on a wildfire i was on out west...i think we were in Oregon on the Res. He mustve been taking some good stuff, or exercising right.

Offline Ron Scott

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Re: Smokejumpers
« Reply #64 on: June 30, 2016, 10:46:29 am »
I once had a crew of Oregon loggers assigned to me on an Oregon fire back in 1974. The "fallers" were the best at falling burning snags on very steep slopes.
~Ron