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Pike & San Isabel National Forests
Cimarron & Comanche National Grasslands

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Pike Interagency Hotshot Crew

Employment Information

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The Pike Hotshots are looking for people with diverse experience and backgrounds who want to work in a physical, team-oriented job. Although not required, 2-3 seasons of previous wildland fire experience is desirable. Because competetion for positions is often very strong, we rarely hire candidates with little or no experience. For those candidates new to wildland fire, we strongly encourouge you to visit the Gaining Experience section at the bottom of this page.


Before applying, be sure to consider your ability and willingness to dedicate to a hotshot crew. Some questions to ask yourself might include:

  • Are you willing to tavel frequently and for prolonged periods at a moment's notice?

  • Can you meet the physical fitness standard measured by the pack test?

  • Can you meet the other physical demands of the job including hard manual labor and long strenuous hikes with 40 pounds of gear for 16 hours a day, 7 days a week while hungry and tired?

  • Can you deal with the mentally taxing components of the position, including stressful situations, being away from home, and spending 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with 19 others and not visiting or being in touch with "civilization" for 14 days?

working on fire line

The Pike Hotshots have both seasonal and permanent status positions. Seasonal position openings are generally more frequent and numerous than permanent positions. Seasonal or temporary employees do not have permanent status or benefits. However, seasonal employees are guaranteed 40 hours a week during their term of employment.

How to Apply

Learn more about fire employment with the U.S. Forest Service

Learn more about Interagency Hotshot Crews

Apply for permanent and/or seasonal positions through AVUE

Some permanent jobs may be advertised at USAJOBS

  1. Be sure to apply to the HOTSHOT specific job announcement (TEMP-OCR-462-4-HOTSHOT) (TEMP-OCR-462-5-HOTSHOT)

  2. Our duty station is MONUMENT, CO

When to Apply

The announcement for seasonal positions with the Pike Hotshot is open almost year round. Permanent positions will be open only until they are filled. The Pike Hotshots will request applications from AVUE for seasonal positions in January.


All prospective seasonal applicants should have their full and complete applications to the appropriate announcements in AVUE no later than JANUARY 1st.


Current Openings and Announcements:




Additional Info

Prospective applicants are strongly encouraged to phone the Pike Hotshots and express interest in open positions. The Pike IHC also conducts on-site visits at MFC by appointment only. Be prepared to describe your work experience, education, professional goals, and physical fitness regimen.


Assistant Superintendent Mike Alexander is the primary contact for prospective applicants, though any of our permanent employees can help you. Contact Mike through the following channels:


Office: 719.488.1242 (Monday - Thursday 0800 - 1600 MST)

Email: malexander@fs.fed.us


Updated 8/20/2009


Due to the number of applications received each year for the Pike Hotshots, it is not possible for us to notify everyone who may have applied regarding final selections.

Gaining Experience

Many more candidates apply to the Pike Hotshots than we have openings for. A variety of factors play into our seasonal selections, but previous wildland fire experience is one of the foremost. Those candidates who are new to wildland fire, or have tried unsuccessfully in the past to gain Hotshot employment are strongly encouraged to seek employment with a National Forest, BLM unit, or National Park that hosts an Interagency Hotshot Crew. Crews on those units will often utilize local fire personnel for "filler" positions throughout the season. Successful "fillers" on Hotshot crews stand a better chance of getting hired the next fire season because they have shown they are capable of doing the job.


The Pike Hotshots, due to a variety of circumstances, usually have one or more filler slots per tour throughout the fire season. We almost invariably utilize personnel from the Pike and San Isabel National Forest's engine crews and fuels crews. These crews provide excellent training and fire experience, and are the first people we call when we need a filler. The names listed below are hiring contacts for wildland engines and fuels crews hosted by the Pike and San Isabel National Forests. We strongly recommended contacting these individuals if you are seeking employment with a high-quality wildland firefighting unit, while gaining experience and training. Many of the individuals listed below are former members of the Pike Hotshots or other IHCs, and all of them are close associates of the Pike Hotshots.


Pike - San Isabel Hiring Contacts

Mountain Zone - Salida, CO

Engine: John Markalunas 719.530.2154

Fuels: Andy White 719.530.2157


Pikes Peak R.D. - Woodland Park, CO

Engines (2): Tom Barter 719.687.9414 ext. 104

Fuels: Bob Ayotte 719.338.4996


South Park R.D. - Lake George, CO

Engine and I.A. Squad: Dennis Darling or Carolyn Zanotto 719.748.3936


South Platte R.D. - Buffalo Creek, CO

Engines (2): Danny Escobedo 303.275.5630

USDA logo, which links to the department's national site. Forest Service logo, which links to the agency's national site.