Vail Daily columnist Warren Miller: Boom time opportunity |

Vail Daily columnist Warren Miller: Boom time opportunity

Warren Miller
Vail, CO, Colorado

So you are out of college and can’t find a job? As Richard Henry Dana once said, “Go north, young man!”

Today, you don’t have to go north to Alaska – just go to North Dakota where the unemployment level is less than 3 percent! That’s right, 3 percent and the wages vary between a low of $80,000 and as high as $180,000 a year.

Some companies, such as Liberty Resources, give you two weeks off every month. If you are tired of the phone never ringing with a great job offer, here is the chance for some high adventure in a frontier environment.

The bad side of this offer is that you have to work long, hard hours and pay a lot of money for room and board. However, for some of the companies that provide places to stay, the job turnover rate is as low as 5 percent.

If you can twirl a wrench, solder a wire, hammer a nail, dig a hole, drive a water truck or fill one up, there is a job waiting for you.

Support Local Journalism

Here is some advice for you for your new profession. First, rig up your car so you can sleep in it comfortably down to about zero. Simply remove the backrest from the passenger side of the front seat, lay down two or three 2 by 12s for your bed and add a piece of foam for a mattress. Buy two mummy-type sleeping bags and insert one inside of the other. You are good to sleep warmly at 20 or 30 below.

Make sure you have enough cash or float on your credit card to drive to North Dakota and back. You can have an adventure not very many can have and make a lot of money at the same time, while helping make America energy independent.

One of the companies held a job fair in Detroit where the unemployment rate is 25 percent. Three-hundred people showed up, and 99 had job skills that were attractive. Of the 99 people who were accepted, only two joined up for work. Too bad that Detroit has been very spoiled by the union mentality.

At the end of World War II, a lot of people went to Alaska and found adventure and big income.

In 1950, there were fewer than 15 ski resorts in America. In the 1950s and 1960s, men and women under good leadership built Mammoth, Squaw Valley, Breckenridge and Vail. The real adventurers never went back to the city because ski resort living was too good.

Where else can you have two weeks off every month to go skiing and at the same time make over $100,000 a year? North Dakota.

There is enough natural gas and oil in the fields of North Dakota to last America for the next 100 years. Those fields have already rescued our imported oil expense by over 20 percent.

Sure, there is controversy over these oil fields, but it’s unwarranted. The drilling rig goes down 8,000 or 10,000 feet, where the oil-bearing rock is located, and then changes direction and drills horizontally another 10,000 feet. Then the drill bit and drill is retrieved, and another company injects high-pressure water into the drill hole and the oil starts flowing upward. The high pressure is 30,000 pounds per square foot. This fractures the rock, and you have job security for the next 100 years if you want it, not to mention oil.

The reason for equipping your car to sleep in is simple. All you need to do is to make sure the restaurant or truck stop parking lot you are sleeping in is open 24 hours a day. This will make your search for accommodations to fill your needs on a no-overhead basis.

Moving right along while you look for the job and a place to live, you should be making your Carhart jacket look as though it has been worn for a long time, not just since you left your parent’s home!

It has been said that anyone who has graduated from college in the past five years will have at least nine professions during their lives. Why not make a job in North Dakota one of them?

If you are still sitting around the house, waiting for Mom or Dad to get home from work and your mother to cook dinner, the perfect jobs are not going to come your way ringing a bell like an ice cream wagon during the summer. Why not just fill up your old college car with gas and drive off to North Dakota and start a new life?

I can remember when I worked all day as a carpenter framing houses while I was editing film at night at the beginning of my film career.

Those dual careers were the best and most emotionally and financially educational years of my life. I was creating something all day long with a skill saw and my hammer and most of the night with a pot of glue and an editing bench.

It’s amazing how much more you learn when what you learn is because of a hunger to survive.

If you had a job in the city, you would be working eight hours a day, commuting for another hour at least and partying for three or four. Why not work for 12 and get that nest egg put together for your entrepreneurial idea job of the future?

When I was in college, I worked as a swamper on a truck and trailer. My job simply was to help load and unload hundreds and hundreds of 5 gallon bottles of water. Occasionally, the driver let me move the big rig around the yard.

In North Dakota, some truck drivers who own their own rigs are earning more than $250,000 a year. That’s a lot of money in anyone’s bank account. It is an easy drive from the oil patch to any one of the 16 ski resorts in Montana.

Unfortunately, the refinery for all of this oil is in Texas and the government won’t let them build a pipeline to connect the two places. At least not yet. It is estimated that the pipeline will take two years to build once they get the go ahead, and it will provide another half a million jobs for those two years.

For more information on , contact the Chamber of Commerce in North Dakota so you can put your financial worries behind you and move out of your parent’s house and at the same time, work in a state where the unemployment rate is under 3 percent and your income will be really high, with earnings starting around $80,000 a year!

Filmmaker Warren Miller lived in Vail for 12 years, and his syndicatedcolumn began in the Vail Daily.

Support Local Journalism