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Backcountry Rangers

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Re: Backcountry Rangers

Postby lambertiana » Thu Sep 23, 2010 8:58 pm

My first encounter was around 1995 in Mokelumne Wilderness, on the trail between Tanglewood and Mokelumne Peak (about five miles in from Tanglewood), only person I saw that day. Then I went ten years before seeing one on the Franklin Pass trail (considering how often I am around Mineral King, it may be unusual to have had only one meeting on the trail there). After that, in the last five years, I have met the ranger at Roaring River, George Durkee at Charlotte Lake, the Rae Lakes ranger coming over Glen Pass, a Sierra NF ranger on Piute Creek, the ranger at McClure, and the ranger at Bench Lake. There was another one I met on a North Lake to South Lake loop, but I don't recall exactly where. And, of course, a couple times on the Portal side of Mt Whitney on a few trips, that is patrolled heavily.



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Re: Backcountry Rangers

Postby sierramel » Fri Sep 24, 2010 1:17 pm

Wow.. How could I ever fail to remember Patt? The first time I ran into her in '96, she was working out of the cabin just west of Sally Keyes. After that, every time I was over that way she'd be wandering around between there, Rosemarie Marie Meadow and the Muir Trail Ranch. These days, as probably a lot of you know who get down to the MRT, she is the short, gray-haired, grandmotherly little person who checks people into the resupplies at the ranch.
Hell, it seems nearly everyone I run into on the JMT knows who Patt is!
"Some places remain unknown because no one has ventured forth. Others remain so because no one has ever come back."
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Re: Backcountry Rangers

Postby BSquared » Sat Sep 25, 2010 7:42 am

sierramel wrote:Wow.. How could I ever fail to remember Patt? The first time I ran into her in '96, she was working out of the cabin just west of Sally Keyes. After that, every time I was over that way she'd be wandering around between there, Rosemarie Marie Meadow and the Muir Trail Ranch. These days, as probably a lot of you know who get down to the MRT, she is the short, gray-haired, grandmotherly little person who checks people into the resupplies at the ranch.
Hell, it seems nearly everyone I run into on the JMT knows who Patt is!
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Re: Backcountry Rangers

Postby ndwoods » Mon Sep 27, 2010 8:05 am

I don't run into them that often, but probably at least a doz times in the last 30-40 years....:)
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Re: Backcountry Rangers

Postby Jimr » Tue Sep 28, 2010 11:04 am

Only once. 1985, Ionian Basin. Randy Morgenson was hiking up into the basin on his day off trying to get away from the crowds below. My buddy had crushed his ankle trying to hurry over a talus field (idiot!) within an hour of ranger Randy's arrival. The next day was spent evacuating my crippled (idiot) friend.
In our thirst for freedom, we must be careful not to drink from the cup of bitterness and hatred

- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
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Re: Backcountry Rangers

Postby sierramel » Fri Oct 01, 2010 5:01 pm

Hey!
Patt does some lurking here. I just got an email from her and she thought the picture was sooo funny. She really liked it!
"Some places remain unknown because no one has ventured forth. Others remain so because no one has ever come back."
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Re: Backcountry Rangers

Postby BSquared » Fri Oct 01, 2010 5:52 pm

Ut-oh! Better watch what I say ;)
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Re: Backcountry Rangers

Postby East Side Hiker » Fri Nov 12, 2010 2:30 pm

Rangers and trail crews began getting cut in the early 80's. I have seen only one ranger in the past 10 years - that was while walking up Mt. Dana three July's ago. He was loaded down with all his stuff - including a gun - and had just come to Yosemite from Yellowstone. I was 100 yds off the trail, about 1/2 way up, photo'ing an alpine columbine, and he came over. To my astonishment, he asked what the flower was.
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Re: Backcountry Rangers

Postby Hetchy » Tue Nov 30, 2010 7:36 pm

I used to meet a ranger everytime I crossed O'Shaunessey at Hetch Hetchy. After 9-11 they began to close the road from 9PM to 7AM so the last Ranger checks the backpacker camp at the dam before heading up to lock the road at Mather.
The last Backcountry ranger i met was back around 2002. It was late May and the Lake Vernon Bridge crossing was flooded as usual. I was waiting to cross when the water dropped afternoon (the "tide" is always oposite what you would think here). As i was sitting in the shade a Back Country Ranger(uniform) and a companion(no-uniform) showed up and scared the daylights out of me. I did not hear them approach due to the roar of the snow melt waters. We had a great laugh and all three of us waded across well above the falls at the bridge.
In 2007(I think) I met a Yosemite park docent in Beehive meadows. We were comparing trails we had hiked and talking about "sneaky" routes offtrail to places in the Northern Yosemite when he produced and ancient piece of paper. It was a very old looking map with all manner of hand draw routes to Edyth, Bearup, Ardeth, as well as the Branigan and Otter lakes Chains. It was like seeing a top secret document! I tried to memorise some of the routes but there was too much detail. He said that some of those had been closed down or disguised to discourage folks from using them. I sure wish I had taken a photo of that map! Anyhow it was cool to talk to someone that had so much knowledge of the area.
I will never forget what he said.
I told him I rarely ever have seen a backcountry ranger out there.
He replied: "But they see you!"
Perhaps a rather ominous and dramatic thing for him to say but i always try think: "What would a ranger, someone who sees this place all the time, think of my passing? " "Did i leave a trace?"
I can honestly say that encounter with the docent really made me think about how the rangers must see "us". The good the bad and the ugly things we do out there.
I really miss the Sierra.
You can make more money, but you can't make more time.
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Re: Backcountry Rangers

Postby BrianF » Tue Nov 30, 2010 8:14 pm

Good final point there Hetchy, Made me think. Each of us probably makes at least some minor transgression to leave no trace or the law at some point in our careers and looks at it as an inconsequential, isolated incident; but to a ranger who lives and breathes that area it must seem one of a long string of violations to that wnderful place we all love.
The direction you are moving in is what matters, not the place you happen to be -Colin Fletcher
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