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Work Trade General Information

We’re happy to provide work trade opportunities for those who cannot afford the full Winter Count registration fee, or who simply wish to trade work for entry. (Scroll down for descriptions of all positions.) Applicants must be 18 and over to apply.

For Winter Count 2024, work trade applications will be available on November 1, 2023, and must be to crew leaders by December 1, 2023—unless enough applications come in and we close the application period early. Best to apply as soon as possible. You’ll be notified of your application status by January 1, 2024.

We charge a $25 non-refundable application fee. (There are a few reasons for this, and we’re happy to explain it if you give us a call.) If you don’t get on a crew but still want to attend Winter Count as a participant, the $25 application fee will be credited to your registration.

All exchanges and trades must be worked out in advance. Do not show up at the gate and expect a work trade position. If you know you need to work, plan in advance. You must fill out a work trade application form to be eligible.

IMPORTANT: We typically have many returning work traders each year, which means open slots can be few. This should not stop you from applying, but keep in mind that you won’t be notified of the status of your application until December 1, 2023 (at the latest).

A number of tickets will be held back for work trade applicants who don’t get on a crew. Once notified that you are not on a crew, you will have until 48hrs. to sign up for regular registration through our website. This ensures that you don’t miss registering while waiting to hear back about a work crew.

Camp Setup and Takedown

This crew arrives Wednesday night (Feb. 14); starts work Thursday, 9 am; and works through Saturday (Feb. 17), before Winter Count opens. You'll also help with cleanup and takedown Saturday (Feb. 24), the day Winter Count ends. The job is complete when camp is secured.

We'll be digging sump holes and setting up the kitchen, wall tents, flies, jelly fish, teaching areas, signs, bulletin board, firewood, Main Camp fire area, etc. A good working knowledge of basic knots is highly recommended, i.e., trucker’s hitch with a slippery figure 8, bowline, half hitch, square knot, clove hitch, and sheet bend.


There might be other jobs over the course of the week, such as checking wristbands and so forth. Applicants should understand that the work is rigorous and entails lifting heavy objects. We may work long days!


This is a full-registration work trade position.

Dinner Crew

Kitchen staff orientation starts Sunday (Feb. 18), 10 am. In addition, everyone is expected to help with kitchen breakdown after Winter Count ends on Saturday morning.  

Kitchen crew is required to lift heavy pots, chop/cut vegetables for long periods of time, and follow directions! If you have personal issues with authority, please do not apply. You will also be required to follow health code rules when working with food. This means close-toed shoes, tying loose hair back, wearing gloves, shirts, etc.  

This job entails preparing a meal for 500-600 people in a 2-hour period, which does not allow for tardiness or visiting with friends outside of the crew while working. We all enjoy having fun and working together in the kitchen, but the first priority is feeding the camp. Kitchen crew members must show proof of a current Food Handlers Card (any state will do). They can be obtained online for about $10. 

Arizona Food Handlers Permit

This is a full-registration work trade position.

Cleaner Uppers

You'll be required to spend about 1 hour helping with meal cleanup after each dinner, starting at 6:20 pm. The week's work starts with dinner on Sunday (Feb. 18) and may end with kitchen pack up on the following Saturday morning (Feb. 24). This job encompasses 6 dinners. 

This position will deduct $115 from your registration fee.


Servers will start the week with dinner on Sunday (Feb. 18), and finish with dinner on Friday (Feb. 23). This job includes 6 dinners. You'll be expected to be ready to serve from 5:55 pm to 6:25 pm. It is essential that you arrive on time. You will also be asked to check wristbands as you serve the meal. The time commitment is 25-30 minutes per meal.

Servers must show proof of a current Food Handlers Card (any state will do). They can be obtained online for about $10. 

Arizona Food Handlers Permit

This position will deduct $65 from your registration fee.

Apply for Work Trade

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