Workamping in the US – Part 2

This week’s blog is about Workamping jobs that are not so ordinary. I have pulled an article from our May/June 2017 issue submitted by Mike Finke.

Some of the photos were provided by the author, Mike Finke. Some were provided by the Clark County Shooting Complex.

Being Range Safety Officers at a Shooting Complex in Nevada

The Clark County Shooting Complex is located where Decatur Blvd ends in the north end of Las Vegas at the base of the Sheep Mountain Range. The complex features a pistol-rifle center, a shotgun center, an archery center, and an education center. Each of these centers except the education center are staffed not only with paid county employees, but also with Workampers. The Workampers are also involved in light landscaping, maintenance, and office work.

Mike & Nadine

There are two classifications for Workampers based upon the number of hours that they work. The management works with each Workamper to place them in the most appropriate job or assignment.

There are two RV parks at the complex and these are based again on the number of hours that you work. The 30-hour Workampers can divide their hours into 15 hours per person as a couple or all 30 hours for a solo person. Their RV park is located in what is referred to as “The Village”. These spots are in a section of the complex that is lower on the mountain and are covered with a canopy.

The second classification is 20-hour Workampers. They work 10 hours per person, or all 20 if a solo. Their RV spots are located further up the mountain near the shotgun center. As well as 15 spots reserved for Workampers in the upper park, there are 65 additional spots for other campers who visit the range for recreational shooting vacations or to enter special events held at the Shotgun Complex.

One of the buildings at the complex

The complex requires a commitment of no less than 4 months without regard to season since the park is open year-round. A full hookup is provided with 30 and 50 amp electric, great water pressure, and a free laundry facility is located on the complex. The shotgun center has a restaurant called John Mull’s Road Kill Grill II; some of the best BBQ around. Workampers may also receive free or reduced fees towards shooting at the complex.

The winter season begeins in November and ends around the end of March. During this season there could be up to 77 Workampers working. Because of the high temperatures during the summer, there are fewer Workampers. There are also Workampers that stay and work at the complex year-round.

Nadine and I are Range Safety Officers (RSO) at the pistol/rifle range. We work one day per week, 5 hours in the morning and 5 hours in the evening. This is not the norm for Workamping, it just happens that the split shift was open and we accepted the time frame.

Shooting Range

Nadine usually works on the rifle side which has long and short targets of 50 to 200 yards. I work on the pistol side of the center which has short targets from 3 to 50 yards. It is, at times, very fast paced and vigilance is required during both shooting and cease fire sessions to maintain safety.

It is not necessary to have any experience in handling weapons since the paid RSOs are available to assist new shooters or problems with a weapon.

Guests shooting at the range

The major duties are to make sure that people follow the rules and to clean up brass. It is a long day, but allows us to complete our commitment in one day and have 6 days off in a row.

Steve & Dot

Steve and Dot, also 20-hour Workampers, work on Mondays and Tuesdays when the complex is closed. Their duties include maintaining the grounds on the shotgun center by picking up shells and raking the rock landscape. Appearance is one of the most important duties at the complex and most of the Workampers are involved in that aspect. A lot of what they and others do are what could be considered normal duties at most Workamping positions.

Mark & Kathy

Mark and Kathy work 20 hours per week on the shotgun range as Range Safety Officers. Their main duties are to maintain a safe atmosphere for the skeet and clay shooters. They also assist the shooters by releasing the clay targets when they choose not to use the vice command throwing machines, and notify the shooter if any safety rules are violated. They are also responsible for keeping the area clean.

There are a variety of other positions here at the complex over and above those that I have listed. The 2,900 acre complex offers a one of a kind experience from its unique setting that has a panoramic view of the entire Las Vegas valley.

As you can see, Workamping here is not your typical position nor your typical campground, so if you are looking for something unique this could be the place for you.

Safe travels…

Leave a Reply