Friday, February 10, 2012

Summer Park Plans

I officially got the official word yesterday – I’ll be returning to Yellowstone National Park this summer.  

Woo Hoo!

IMG_7892 ViewFromSummitMtWashburn
 Yellowstone Plateau with Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River - view from Mt. Washburn

Working as a seasonal interpretive ranger for the park service always means a waiting game from one season to the next.  I was pretty sure I’d be going back to Grant Village in the south district of the park but you never really know until government funding for the summer is in place. 

We’ll be doing two extra short programs during our weekly schedule.  Besides the classic Evening Program and others such as Ranger Rendezvous, Wildlife Wonders, Junior Ranger, Hot Water Wilderness walk, and Scenic lake Overlook hike, we’re adding a new program at West Thumb Geyser Basin and a new culturally-oriented program at the Grant Village pavilion.  Interpretive rangers research, develop, and present original themed programs, so the next time you visit our national parks and listen to a ranger program, know that we do not just pull this stuff out from under our flat hats.  We spend a lot of time creating quality programs for YOU, our park visitor.

One of my collateral duties this summer will be to assemble a specimen collection of rock types from the park for educational use at Grant Village. I will be responsible for hiking around the park with a geologic map, identifying different rock types and putting together a collection for display in our visitor center. How much fun will that be???

I’ve already started reviewing my caldera geology along with reading up on the cultural history of the area, both pre–historic and historic.  I've got a fun new caldera model for use in my Ranger Rendezvous program (no more vinegar, baking soda, and dish soap this season, by golly!).  Plus I’ve got hundreds of ideas for new places to hike and explore in our first national park.

My two stuffed beavers have not decided if they will make the return trip so I may need to consider adopting another pair for participation my my Wildlife Wonders and Junior Ranger programs.  

Did you know that these little lumberjacks have two sets of lips?



  1. Yipee, we'll all get to see more of Yellowstone. Nice collateral duty to get paid to hike and gather rocks.

    We have to get a special permit to gather the canyon rocks.

    Sure wish I knew ahead what my collateral duties will be at GRCA. Last year I was in charge of the AIR program.

    1. Grant Village has a special collecting permit, as long as samples are collected for park purposes. I had discussed this with my supervisor last summer, and volunteered to do the collection, and she thought it was an excellent idea. I can do so much with this idea - samples,photo images, explanations of the specific geologic provenance. I am really excited about it!

      Last year my collateral duty at Grant was to inventory the library books. Now I know where everything is!

  2. Hey, we may see you this summer, then! Hubby wants to drive up to Yellowstone!

    1. Very nice, Desertsandbeyond! Definitely swing by the Grant Village visitor center and introduce yourself. It would be fun to meet!

      Last year I met two other bloggers who ambled up to the visitor center desk to say hi - Geotripper and CamelsAndChocolate.

  3. Have a great time at Yellowstone! We'll miss you this year, as our big trip is more to the southwest this time around. Have fun rock collecting in the park (that sounds so wrong... How about "have fun collecting OUR rocks"?).

    1. Garry - I will definitely have a blast (pun VERY much intended!) assembling a specimen collection of OUR rock types from the park for educational use at Grant Village.

      Summer Prediction is for many blog posts about ash flow tuffs!

      Very much look forward to following your travels. You give me so many wonderful ideas of places to visit and new ways to look at the landscape.

  4. Nina, I am so happy for you and "Green with Envy"! I love your Watch for Rocks postings. Keep up the good work and have a great summer.
    Love and blessings, Wanda Magleby

    1. Wanda - Wow! I had just been thinking of you a day or so ago.

      So glad you are still enjoying the posts. I am really looking forward to going back to Yellowstone - come visit if you are in the area!