Tree worker basics with EDC

In partnership with Rain Shadow Consulting, the San Juan County Economic Development Council will offer a free six-week training in tree work and arboriculture, beginning Dec. 5.

The course will be taught at the Rain Shadow Consulting office by Carson Sprenger, who has over 20 years of experience working in the forests of the San Juan Islands.

The hands-on curriculum has been designed for students and career changers interested in working in the tree care or tree service and landscaping trades. The class will cover tree worker safety and how to avoid common injuries; Washington Labor & Industries laws and employer responsibilities for tree workers; tools of the trade including ropes, rigging systems, climbing systems, aerial lifts, hand saws, chain saws, chippers and tree service trucks; proper pruning techniques; tree felling techniques and specialized rigging systems; care and feeding of your chainsaw and other common tool maintenance; working with rope: knots to know and basic splicing; tree and plant health; common tree species and basic tree identification; tree physiology and how trees respond to injury; physical demands of working in the tree care trades; industry organizations and certification – from tree worker to certified arborist.

This six-week course will run from 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays from Dec. 5 – Jan. 23 with one on-site day on Saturday, Feb. 1. There is no cost for the training; pre-registration and a $10 filing fee is required. The deadline to apply is Thursday, Nov. 21.

To apply, please visit the EDC’s website at For more information call the EDC office at 360-378-2906 or email EDC Trades Coordinator at

This program is sponsored by Walt Corbin and the Kiwanis Club of Orcas Island. The EDC’s Trades Education Initiative is additionally supported by San Juan County, the Town of Friday Harbor, the Port of Friday Harbor, San Juan Island School District, Heritage Bank and Islanders Bank.

The San Juan County Economic Development Council strives to strengthen and diversify the economy of San Juan County. We believe a strong economy builds a strong community.