Wednesday, June 9, 2010

My Review of Ranger Confidential

Originally submitted at REI

Ranger Confidential offers a behind-the-scenes look at the life of a ranger in America's national parks.

Retired Park Ranger/Writer's Perspective

By bwbytnar from Raphine, Virginia on 6/9/2010


5out of 5

Gift: No

Pros: Easy to read

Describe Yourself: Professional/Guide

Even though I spent more than 32 years as a National Park Ranger and lived many experiences similar to those depicted in Ranger Confidential, I found the book exciting and riveting. Andrea Lankford is a gifted writer and story teller who passes on experiences she lived first hand in some of our most popular and risk filled parks. The risks portrayed in this book are taken by park visitors and result in the danger and stress placed on park rangers attempting to protect them from the park, themselves, and other human predators.
I remember hearing of many of the adventures in this book in National Park Service Morning Reports and at ranger training courses and meetings. Ms. Lankford relates the inside back-story of these incidents in an accurate and colorful way. I found the book hard to put down.
The book honestly reflects the emotional and physical consequences of being a National Park Ranger. Although I was not there hanging off Half Dome or the edge of the Grand Canyon with these rangers, this book stirred many of the same emotions, frustrations, and challenges I faced in my career.
I highly recommend Park Ranger Confidential to anyone interested in our National Parks or what it takes to be a National Park Ranger in a major park today.
Bruce W. Bytnar, Author of A Park Ranger's Life: Thirty Two Years Protecting Our National Parks


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