Ditch the Desk: 20 Outdoor Jobs That Pay Well

by posted in MAKE MONEY, Passive Income Ideas, Remote Job Opportunities, Side Hustle Ideas

Do you find yourself daydreaming about a career that lets you escape the monotony of the office and immerse yourself in nature? If so, you’re in luck! 

The great outdoors offers a world of career opportunities that are exciting, fulfilling, and financially rewarding. From forestry technicians to outdoor educators, these jobs let you spend your days exploring and experiencing the beauty of nature. 

The Top 20 Outdoor Jobs That Pay Well

Whether you’re an adventurer seeking a thrill or a nature lover looking to make a difference, an outdoor career is perfect. Why not turn your passion for the outdoors into a lifestyle? Here are 20 outdoor jobs that pay well to get you started.

1. Wildlife Biologist

Average Salary Per Month: $5,096

Wildlife biologists are professionals who study and protect the planet’s varied animal life. Their work involves exploring animal populations, habitats, behaviors, and conservation requirements. 

One of the most remarkable aspects of this occupation is the opportunity to work outdoors with breathtaking natural environments, ranging from dense rainforests to isolated savannas. These committed scientists are instrumental in maintaining the balance of ecosystems and endangered species, ensuring the continuity of life for future generations.

2. Park Ranger

Average Salary Per Month: $3,473 

People highly respect park rangers for their dedication to preserving natural treasures. They enforce park rules, manage vast natural landscapes, and safeguard the environment. Additionally, they foster a deep connection between people and nature and create educational programs and engaging experiences.

If you take up this career path, your responsibilities may include managing terrestrial, marine, and island parks, fire incidents in the area, and wildlife and visitor safety. 

Being a park ranger is a fulfilling career and a well-paying one. The substantial compensation the position offers recognizes the vital role in maintaining the beauty and integrity of our forests and conservatories.

3. Environmental Engineer

Average Salary Per Month: $6,033

Environmental engineering is a critical field that combines engineering principles with a focus on protecting the planet’s health. These engineers design, develop, and implement systems for managing and cleaning municipal water supplies and addressing concerns such as waste treatment, site remediation, and pollution control technology.

They advise corporations, government agencies, and other interested parties about environmental issues, including procedures for cleaning up contaminated sites, and provide technical support for environmental remediation projects and legal actions. 

By working as an environmental engineer, you can make a difference in protecting the environment. With the increasing demand for clean water and sustainable practices, the role of environmental engineers remains vital in our society today.

4. Landscape Architect

Average Salary Per Month: $6,097

The demand for skilled landscape architects has increased in recent years as people have become more interested in creating sustainable and beautiful outdoor spaces. In addition to designing parks and gardens, landscape architects work on larger projects such as public plazas, waterfronts, and campuses. 

If you possess both technical knowledge and artistic skills, with this profession, you can create functional and aesthetically pleasing outdoor spaces. Due to the specialized nature of the work, landscape architects can often command high salaries, making it a desirable career path if you love the outdoors.

For this career, you will want to pursue a degree in landscape architecture or a similar study area.

5. Geologist

Average Salary Per Month: $4,721

Geology is one of the highest-paying fields in the natural sciences. Geologists earn high salaries due to the critical nature of their work, which involves identifying and assessing valuable natural resources such as minerals, oil, and gas.

As a geologist, you will work to understand the history of our planet. The better you can understand Earth’s history, the better you can foresee how events and processes of the past might influence the future.

Additionally, geologists enjoy many benefits, including flexible work hours, travel opportunities, and the chance to work on projects that positively impact the environment.

6. Forest Ranger

Average Salary Per Month: $3,277

Forest rangers are essential for maintaining the ecological balance of forests, which often include national parks. They protect and manage them while defending against wildfires and overseeing recreational activities. This profession is perfect for those with a deep love for nature and a passion for preservation.

Forest rangers spend most of their time outdoors, making it one outdoor job that pays well and provides an unparalleled connection to nature.

7. Archaeologist

Average Salary Per Month: $ 5,480

Archaeology can be an excellent outdoor job that pays well. Since fieldwork plays a significant role in the job, archaeologists get to explore historical sites, excavate and analyze artifacts, and learn about past civilizations firsthand.

They are scientists who study people and cultures. Their goal is to learn more about human histories and experiences. Archaeologists investigate the physical traces of human activities, sometimes called material culture.

The experience of working in the field can be enriching, as it allows you to travel to different locations and gain a deeper appreciation for the world’s history.

8. Marine Biologist

Green sea turtle
Image Credit: National Marine Sanctuaries, Public Domain/Wiki Commons.

Average Salary Per Month: $ 3,659

Marine biology is a lucrative and fulfilling outdoor job that pays well. These professionals specialize in studying ocean ecosystems and marine life and conducting research on conservation and environmental impact assessments.

Marine biologists study all marine life, from whales to plankton and seawater. They are concerned about how human activities like commercial shipping, recreational boating, and pollution affect marine life. Additionally, they suggest ways to reduce or prevent these impacts to protect our oceans and inhabitants.

With a growing concern for the health of our oceans, there is an increasing demand for skilled marine biologists who can contribute to protecting and preserving marine environments. This an excellent choice for those passionate about marine life and conservation.

9. Surveyor

Average Salary Per Month: $ 5,628

As a land surveyor, your primary responsibility is to measure and map the Earth’s surface. This career involves working on various construction and development projects. You’ll spend much time outdoors, using advanced tools and equipment to gather accurate data and create detailed maps. 

10. Outdoor Adventure Guides

Average Salary Per Month: $2,822

These professionals lead people in various activities such as hiking, rock climbing, and rafting. Their expertise in outdoor skills and safety ensures everyone has a safe and enjoyable experience.

That’s why these guides provide advice on safety measures and ensure that activities are conducted in a manner to minimize risk to participants. As an outdoor adventure guide, you must answer questions and advise on local interest points within a specific region.

Being an adventure guide requires a great deal of knowledge and experience in the outdoors and exceptional communication and leadership skills to guide groups of people through various outdoor activities.

11. Fishing and Hunting Guide

Average Salary Per Month: $3,033

Fishing and hunting guides typically have extensive knowledge of local waterways, wildlife, and ecosystems. In this career, you might provide clients with gear and equipment or help them select and purchase their own.

Guides also ensure that clients follow local laws and regulations related to fishing and hunting. In addition to leading expeditions, guides may provide instruction on fishing and hunting techniques and safety tips. 

12. Agricultural Manager

Average Salary Per Month: $4,149

As an agricultural manager, your primary responsibility is to oversee the cultivation of crops and livestock, ensuring that farms operate efficiently and generate profits. The agricultural manager manages personnel, schedules planting and harvesting, monitors crop and livestock health, and implements strategies for improving farm productivity.

A thriving agricultural manager must have a deep understanding of agricultural practices, be highly organized, and possess strong leadership skills.

13. Solar Panel Installer

Solar Panels
Image Credit: Shutterstock.

Average Salary Per Month: $ 4,010

As the demand for renewable energy grows, solar panel installers are in high demand. Solar panel installers install and maintain solar panels on outdoor surfaces.

In this job title, you will be responsible for installing and maintaining solar panels on various outdoor surfaces. The work involves assessing the ideal placement of solar panels to maximize energy capture, ensuring they are securely mounted, and connecting them to the electrical grid. This position also plays a significant role in system troubleshooting and maintenance, ensuring the panels remain efficient over time.

14. Wind Turbine Technician

Average Salary Per Month: $ 4,057

Wind Turbine Technicians maintain and fix the components of wind turbines, large mechanical structures that convert wind energy into electricity. They replace worn or malfunctioning components and collect turbine data for testing, research, and analysis. With a job in this profession, you will work on wind farms, maintaining and repairing turbines that generate clean energy.

15. Photographer

Average Salary Per Month: $3,303

Do you love taking photos and are ready to make the most of your hobby? Talented photographers can earn substantial incomes through their stunning visuals, as their work is sought after by publications, tourism agencies, and various clients.

This profession combines the thrill of exploration with artistic expression, making it a perfect career choice for nature enthusiasts looking for adventure and a well-paying job.

16. Fire Inspector 

Average Salary Per Month: $ 5,997

Fire inspectors and prevention specialists are responsible for examining buildings to detect fire hazards and ensure compliance with fire codes. It’s worth noting that fire inspectors and investigators typically have prior experience as firefighters, a physically demanding job providing them with valuable knowledge and skills.

In this outdoor career, you will keep detailed records of their inspections and investigations, identify infractions, document corrective action required, and conduct follow-up assessments to ensure compliance with instructions. If a fire occurs, they document everything to help determine the cause and may need to refer to their notes and files during legal proceedings.

17. Construction Manager

construction manager outdoor jobs
Image Credit: Panumas Yanuthai / Shutterstock.

Average Salary Per Month: $6,181

A construction manager oversees the planning and design stages to ensure successful completion. In this role, you will coordinate resources, manage budgets, and ensure that projects are completed on time and within budget. While construction management may sometimes include indoor work, these managers are typically outdoors when on-site and often can manage more than one site at a time. 

18. Avalanche Forecaster

Average Salary Per Month: $2,997

As an avalanche forecaster, you are responsible for safeguarding the public and raising awareness about avalanche hazards. You utilize your expertise in mountaineering and knowledge of mountain conditions, weather patterns, and snow science to assess the risk of avalanches in a given area. As an avalanche forecaster, you stay busy during the fall, winter, and spring months, monitoring snowpacks and collecting data to predict potential avalanche occurrences and ensure the safety of visitors.

19. Oil and Gas Driller

Average Salary Per: $4,451

Oil and gas drilling is a highly lucrative industry in the United States. This occupation involves extracting natural resources from deep beneath the earth’s surface.

Safety is a top priority in the oil and gas drilling industry, as with any job that involves working with heavy machinery and being exposed to potentially hazardous situations. In this role, you must adhere to strict protocols and guidelines to ensure their safety, that of your colleagues, and the environment.

It is a physically demanding job that requires extensive training and experience to operate heavy machinery and manage complex drilling operations—nonetheless, a funfilled and exciting outdoor job.

20. Adventure Filmmaker

Average Monthly Salary: $3,777

Do you have an adventurous side? Maybe you’re a big David Attenborough fan? Well, lucky for you, adventure filmmaking is one of the most exciting outdoor jobs that pay well for those who love the outdoors. These filmmakers specialize in capturing stunning footage of outdoor activities such as rock climbing, surfing, and skiing.

The work involves capturing footage of nature, wildlife, adventure sports, and expeditions to some of the most remote regions of the world. They travel to places barely on the map with only a camera and an idea. 

What makes these filmmakers unique is their ability to capture the thrill of these activities on camera while also telling a compelling story. They often work in challenging and remote locations, requiring excellent outdoor skills and a deep understanding of their subject matter.

The Bottom Line

So, if you have a passion for the outdoors, numerous outdoor jobs that pay well are available to you. Whether you’re interested in wildlife conservation, environmental science, or outdoor recreation, these top 20 outdoor jobs pay well and offer the opportunity to connect with the natural world.

Consider pursuing a career that aligns with your interests and values, and you can enjoy a fulfilling and lucrative profession while basking in the beauty of the great outdoors.


About author


Follow me:
View my other posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *