I don’t think it’s a stretch to call the National Park System America’s best idea. Some of my most cherished memories are of trips to national parks.
And part of what makes them great are the rangers. Their love for the parks shines through, and that is what makes them want to make every visitor love the parks just as much as they do. I still remember the joy bubbling in a ranger almost as much as the geysers in Yellowstone as he gave us a tour.
… “ranger” is lots of people’s dream job. (See last year’s Outside magazine jobs issue—this is referenced no fewer than three times.) Second, as far as I can tell, there is no “standard” way to come into rangering. This may be changing as there are starting to be university degree programs working in conjunction with NPS to funnel people into the profession via a specific college track, but right now literally everyone I know got here a different way.