Bay Area Ridge Trail Council – Trail Planner/Coordinator

Are you passionate about trails and the many benefits they offer? Are you a successful planner or project coordinator with excellent communication skills who would love to use your skills to help extend and complete the Bay Area Ridge Trail?

The Ridge Trail Council is looking for a dynamic professional to support our Trail program working with partners to plan, build, sign and open new trail around the bay. This position reports to the Trail Program Director and works closely with a team of 6-7 staff and with park agency and other partners, stakeholders and volunteers to promote our mission. The successful candidate will support trail planning work on gap-specific and area-wide studies and strategic initiatives.


The Ridge Trail Council’s mission is to plan, promote and sustain a connected hiking, cycling and equestrian trail on the ridgelines around San Francisco Bay – linking people, parks and open space for today and future generations. We’re more than two-thirds of the way to our goal, with 380 miles of the ultimate 550-mile loop now complete.

The Council is a 30-year old stable nonprofit with a professional, well-respected staff, a dedicated and active Board of Directors, and an extensive cadre of volunteers. The office is currently located in the San Francisco Presidio and is served by a free shuttle to/from the Embarcadero BART and Transbay Terminal. An office location change is possible; a central location with good access via public transit would be a priority. Flexible hours, remote work and/or less than full time are also possible.


  • Research critical trail gaps and potential gap closure strategies.
  • Cultivate relationships and communicate with key partners, stakeholders and the public.
  • Update and maintain custom trail database, internal and public trail maps.
  • Review and analysis of trail planning, design, environmental review, and permitting documents
  • Prepare and present written and oral and technical reports
  • Support work under grants and special projects
  • Track various aspects of trail planning and development including routing, connectivity and access, shared use, environmental protection, signage and other issues as appropriate.
  • Help plan and implement trail openings and events and occasionally assist with stewardship or donor cultivation events.
  • Serve as a Ridge Trail Council ambassador to partners, stakeholders, advocates and the public.
  • Other duties as assigned.


  • Bachelor degree.
  • Minimum 1-3 years of directly related work experience in trail, open space or land use planning, community organizing, natural resource management or related field.
  • Strong organization skills and an ability to prioritize and work on multiple complex projects.
  • Work both independently and as a member of a team.
  • Strong relationship-building skills and ability to work effectively with diverse stakeholders.
  • Knowledge of trail planning, design, environmental review and permitting preferred.
  • Experience with park agency, land trust real estate transactions and trail easements preferred.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Strong planning and analytical skills.
  • Flexibility, creative problem solving, and an ability to thrive in a nonprofit environment.
  • Familiarity with Bay Area geography, parks and natural resources a plus.
  • Computer proficiency in Microsoft Office programs; proficiency with GIS, Adobe Creative Suite, and database management a plus.


  • Ability to work in a standard office setting and use standard office equipment, including a computer, and strength to lift and carry materials weighing up to 20 pounds; vision to read printed materials and a computer screen; and hearing and speech to communicate in person and over the telephone.
  • Able to hike rough terrain.
  • Able to work evenings and weekends occasionally, travel in the Bay Area, have a California Driver’s License and access to a motor vehicle.


The Council strives to pay competitive salaries within the nonprofit community and compensation is based on experience. Benefits include paid vacation, holidays, sick leave, and medical, dental and vision coverage and a 401k plan.


The Council is an equal opportunity employer and committed to a diverse team. To apply, please send a resume and cover letter which includes responses to the questions below and salary objectives to and indicate “Trail Planner” in the subject line. If you are interested in part-time work, please indicate that in your cover letter. Please visit to learn more about the Ridge Trail.


Please answer these questions below (1-3 paragraphs each) :

  1. Why are trails and open space important to you?
  2. Describe a successful project you worked on, your role and the key components that helped create a successful outcome.